Perth Men’s Shed has announced it will finally reopen next week, after lockdown forced it to close for more than a year.
The shed, which will reopen on June 30, provides men of all ages and backgrounds a social environment where they can meet others and take part in hobbies like woodworking.
Organised at the North Inch Community Campus, the “shedders” are able to make use of professional equipment.
Hours have been extended to allow the club to implement coronavirus safety measures, although numbers are likely to be limited for a period.
‘Cuppa and a gossip’
Perth Men’s Shed member Sean McRory told how he was looking forward to getting back to the shed after 16 months of lockdown.
He said: “Perth Men’s Shed is a place for men to meet in a social environment with a view to developing or enhancing skills in woodwork and metal work in the campus’s well-equipped technical department.
“However we are predominately a social organisation where top of the agenda is a cuppa and a gossip.
“It’s fair to say, there are members who only come for the social aspect, getting back into a working environment surrounded by like minded men with hugely varied skills and skill levels, from absolute beginners to master craftsmen.”
He added: “We have extended hours slightly to allow for Covid protocols and some degree of flexibility for members. Thereafter, we are hoping to be able to resume the regular schedule of Wednesday evenings and Saturday morning sessions.
“Initially there will be a restriction in numbers able to attend sessions, with safe Covid practices having to be put in place.
“Although new members are usually always welcomed, for the first two sessions we’d like to get back existing members and get an idea on numbers who will be returning.”
After this trial the group said they will be happy to welcome along new members who want to take part.
Age Scotland’s Men’s Sheds community development officer, Tim Green, said local groups stayed connected virtually when they couldn’t meet in person.
“It’s great to hear that Perth Men’s Shed are joining the growing ranks of sheds who are now able to safely re-open their doors as part of the green recovery,” he said.
‘Very welcome news’
“It will be very welcome news for all involved in the shed and for the wider community.
“During lockdown Sheds have utilised video conferencing and buddy systems to stay connected by phone, email or social media, but we know that Shedders have greatly missed the camaraderie, routine and sense of purpose offered by their sheds.
“Thankfully, after what has been a very difficult period, they can now return to helping older people be as well as they can be, providing positive images of ageing and later life and tackling loneliness and isolation.”
Perth Men’s Shed will meet at North Inch Community Campus, Perth, on Wednesdays from 1pm to 4.30pm, and Fridays from 10am to 4.30pm during the school summer holiday period.