The Broadstairs Town Shed is a volunteer led initiative. A place for older people, (over 55) predominately older men, to get together, and participate in meaningful and rewarding DIY/woodwork based activities.
Joining the Shed can help tackle loneliness and isolation, allows you to share and learn new skills and increases community involvement & engagement.
The Broadstairs Town Shed opened it's doors in May 2014. It's been a team effort and we've had lots of support to make it happen. Now we are excited about welcoming people who'd like to get involved, either to one of our regular sessions, or to arrange a one off or regular activity for groups or individuals.
The Shed is a Broadstairs Town Team project. Community working together.
As the months go by this exciting, life enriching, project is going from strength to strength as it grows and more and more people are becoming involved.
Having outgrown the original Little Shed in Pierremont Park, we are now situated at much larger new premises, we call the Big Shed, in Oakwood Industrial Estate, on the Loop bus route and provide DIY based activities and a meeting place, predominantly for older men.
Well equipped woodworking workshop
Tea and coffee making facilities in a pleasant upstairs kitchen/meeting room.
The Shed is run by volunteer 'Shed Heads', supported by a coordinator, Claire Shelton.
'Men's Sheds' started in Australia and there are now 1000 there, with Sheds in 20 countries, and almost 100 in the UK. They have proven to help combat loneliness and isolation and have a positive impact on older men's well being, quality of life and life expectancy.
Mike Jenn, Chair of the UK Men's Sheds Association, has been a Shed member since the start. He says:
"Joining a Shed can sustain a man's health in later life by adding purpose and creating friendships.
"We share good equipment, learn from each other, and chat while pursuing hobbies, working on community projects and making things to support the Shed."
Broadstairs Town Shed has the support of Broadstairs Town Council, Thanet District Council, Kent County Council, Age UK, Thanet Clinical Commissioning Group and other local groups. TDC have allowed us to use what was previously a derelict building in the park to create our shed and a £50,000 grant from the National Lottery People's Millions - secured with the support of the whole community - allowed us to open in 2014.
Laura Sandys, MP for Thanet South has also kindly given our project her support, saying:
"I am delighted to support this fantastic project, which is truly community led. Thanet has above average numbers of older people and it is vital that we do everything we can to ensure that older members of our community are not isolated. This project will really help."