Men’s Sheds reopen across the county
Local Men’s Sheds across the county are beginning to reopen following a year and a half of Covid-19 lockdowns.
The Men’s Shed is a place where men can meet up regularly to have a chat, play a game of cards, and even learn some new skills.
Interests and activities vary from shed to shed and members’ input dictates each group’s strategy for future growth.
The importance of local Men’s Sheds cannot be overestimated and the social platform they provide was sorely missed during the long months of Covid-19.
Visitors to the shed remark on the pleasant atmosphere, where men of all ages can find a safe space and enjoy the company of their peers.
Men from all walks of life can be found at the shed, where loneliness and isolation are staved off.
Chairperson of Ballaghaderreen Men’s Shed, Pat Towey, says sheds give some much-needed structure for members.
“You are lost for something to do (after retirement), particularly if you have nobody to offer you encouragement. Sheds are very aware of emotional health and well-being and play a pivotal role in supporting other men who might be struggling with life.
“Once in a shed setting you will get to know the other guys, and your confidence will grow. You will look forward to attending and engaging in shed life whatever you wish to do. Mental Health is openly discussed and members regularly talk and listen to each other over a cup of tea. There is no judgement in the shed”.
Shed membership is growing in Roscommon and there are now groups in the following areas: Ballaghaderreen, Ballyleague, Boyle, Cloonfad, Castlerea, Strokestown and Rooskey. There are also advanced plans for sheds in Elphin, Kilteevan and Roscommon town.
If you are interested in learning more about the Men’s Shed in your area, check out www.menssheds.ie.
Introducing your local ‘Sheds’…
Located at The Square, Ballaghaderreen Men’s Shed is open every Tuesday evening from 7 pm to 9 pm.
Ballaghaderreen’s Shed was recently visited by residents from the local Emergency Reception and Orientation Centre. The visit was facilitated by Ciaran Mullooly of Roscommon LEADER Partnership.
Through an interpreter, the visitors told the men about themselves and the trades they had practiced in their homeland. The two groups are now planning a future collaboration along with Tom Colleran.
The meeting was a wonderful development and David O’Gara thanked both groups, explaining how they could learn and evolve together to enjoy all that Shed life has to offer.
Located at the GRETB building on Patrick’s Street, Castlerea Men’s Shed reopened recently and members are delighted to get back together following a long lay-off due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Despite its closure, one important outdoor project was brought to fruition during ‘lockdown’: a sculpture of ‘Cindy’ the elephant, who is buried at the Demesne in Castlerea. The existing plaque was cleaned and the sculpture was installed at the burial site which has been converted into a beautiful amenity area complete with flowers, shrubs and seating.
Castlerea Men’s Shed took the lead in organising the project but many local groups and organisations also played their part with funding provided by Roscommon County Council and Castlerea Town Trust.
The shed is open on Tuesdays and Fridays from 10.30 am to 1 pm and looks forward to welcoming new members. It is just the place for men who might have felt cooped up and starved of company because of Covid restrictions.
Cloonfad Men’s Shed is situated beside the national school on the Galway Road and is a brand new development.
Founded in 2019 thanks to the vision of men like Sean Brennan, the new shed was completed just last year at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Cloonfad Shed is open to all new members and is a place where kindness and decency are top of the agenda. Works are currently progressing on a new bowling mat, which is sure to be an added attraction. Cloonfad Men’s Shed is open Fridays from 10 am to 1 pm.
On a sad note, Cloonfad’s members wish to acknowledge the wonderful work and commitment of two founding members who passed away recently: President Tony Mullen, and Chairperson Tom Shannon. Both men were very proud of the facility they had helped to create and it would be their wish that men of all ages join and enjoy what ‘shed life’ is all about.
For further information, please contact Sean Brennan, Newtown, Cloonfad, Ballyhaunis.
Located at Vesnoy, Strokestown Men’s Shed has reopened following a long ‘lockdown’ hiatus. The shed was formed by Sean Furey (RIP), who had a great interest in everything mechanical.
According to members John Gilleran and PJ Martin, the men are excited to open again in their new base. They meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8 pm to 10 pm and are actively looking for new members to assist with some unfinished projects and some new plans. They can be contacted on 086-8356228.