Halton Haven Hospice welcomed guests from across the North West to the official opening of the new family support centre and the Men’s shed project, the first of its kind in the United Kingdom to be launched by a Hospice.
The family support centre and the Men’s shed at Halton Haven Hospice were formally opened by the Lord Lieutenant of Cheshire, David Briggs M.B.E., K.St.J.on Thursday 24th July 2014 in the presence of hospice guests which included users of the Men’s shed, hospice staff, representatives from other hospices, the Mayor of Halton; Cllr Sean Osborne, Derek Twigg MP and hospice volunteers.
In his speech Lord Lieutenant of Cheshire, David Briggs praised the concept of the Men’s shed, which was born after a research project by Macmillan nurse Pauline Hatchard, who works for Bridgewater Community Healthcare NHS Trust.
After the grand opening everyone was invited to have a tour of the new family support centre and Men’s shed and find out more detailed information about the services provided before having something to eat at the bbq hospice volunteers and men of the Men’s shed had put on for guests attending the opening.
Colin Chorley, Men’s shed co-ordinator, said “The official opening day was a very enjoyable and pleasant occasion. It brought everyone together, dignitaries, visitors, members, volunteers and staff. We have come a long way since April, new members are joining every week, It was fantastic to see the men who are now members attending and helping out with the opening, running the barbecue and being available for visitors to ask questions. I am looking forward to the next 12 months and welcome those men who are beavered or those men who care for somebody to call by and have a cup of tea or coffee. I would like to thank everyone for attending.”
John Walton a user and member of the Men’s Shed commented about the day “All the men currently making use of the Men’s shed had a great day at the official opening which seen great weather and plenty of guests turn up.”
“Plenty of interest was shown by all guests and the highlight of the day was when the Men of the Men’s shed got to meet the Lord Lieutenant of Cheshire, David Briggs who was extremely interested in the Men’s shed.
“As a member of the Men’s Shed it is looking really good for our future and developing the Men’s shed further.”
The Men’s shed is now open to men from Halton who have been bereaved or who are caring for relatives suffering from a life-limiting illness and are soon to be bereaved, It provides workshop facilities and activities for men as well as a route into family support services for its members for when they choose to access these services.