“Men’s Sheds” are similar to garden sheds – a place to pursue practical interests at leisure, to practice skills and enjoy making and mending. The difference is that garden sheds and their activities are often solitary in nature while “Men’s Sheds” are the opposite. They’re about making social connections and friendship-building, sharing skills and knowledge, and of course, a lot of laughter.
Some Sheds are purpose-built workshops, but they rarely start out that way. Many don’t have premises at all in the beginning and instead form a group that meets regularly for the social connection, company and camaraderie until they can find somewhere to kit out with tools. .
Activities in Sheds vary greatly, and you can find woodworking, metalworking, repairing and restoring, electronics or model-building in a Shed. Many Sheds get involved in community projects too – restoring village features, helping maintain parks and green spaces, and building things for schools, libraries and individuals in need. They typically attract older men, but many have younger members too. Whatever the activity, the essence of a Shed is not about the building, but about the connections and relationships between its members.
For a long time research has shown the negative impact of loneliness and isolation on a person’s health and wellbeing. Men typically find it more difficult to build social connections than women, and unlike women of a similar age, fewer older men have networks of friends and rarely share their concerns about their health and personal worries. It is not the case for all men, but for some, when retirement comes, it can feel like personal identity and purpose are lost. “Men’s Sheds” can help to change all of that.
Sheds are about meeting like-minded people, about having fun, sharing skills and knowledge and renewing a sense of purpose and belonging. As a by-product of all of that, they reduce isolation and feelings of loneliness, they help men to deal with mental health challenges more easily and remain independent, they rebuild communities, and in many cases, they can save men’s lives!
If you would like to read more about “Men’s Sheds”, you can do so by clicking on the following link which will take you to the UK Men’s Sheds Association: https://menssheds.org.uk/
Nearly 30% of men in East Devon are aged over 65. That includes a lot of men who can benefit from a Men's Shed environment that they can go to and join in with.
Beer Men's Shed was created as an association on 11 March 2019 and, as a result of generous grants and donations from all around our area, it opened the doors of its first workshop on 26 October 2019. It now has some 30 members from Beer and the surrounding towns and villages and has successfully completed over 60 projects in its first year of operation.
If you are a man who would like to know more about Beer Men's Shed, or you would be prepared to join in in some way, then please click below to send us an email.
If this topic isn’t really for you, please tell as many men in Beer and the surrounding area who you can think of who might be interested in Beer Men's Shed.
If you'd like to give a donation to Beer Men's Shed, our bank details are Sort Code 30-96-26 Account Number 49573260.
Thank you! (on behalf of the Beer Men’s Shed team)