We shut our shed do in March due to COVID 19. Firstly because some members have health issues and secondly, we were outgrowing the unit capacity numbers which was compounded further by social distancing. This led to the sad decision after four months, to give notice and stop paying rent for a unit we could no longer use.
The group kept together via WhatsApp initially, but after three months the membership’s interest reduced somewhat. Not all members are tech savvy and some lack access to social media. This meant a plan going forward needed to be made to include all.
An advert was put in the local paper as lockdown started to be relaxed. A charity called the ‘Sandy Croft Centre’, that deals with abusive relationships and domestic complaints offered us a space in their building, which was lovely. The space however had a wooden floor which wouldn’t hold our machinery and was not large enough to accommodate everyone doing workshop bits. There silver lining was that it is big enough to accommodate our socially distanced tea breaks so we decided to use the opportunity we were given to meet face to face.
Even after four months of lockdown, the banter was still there, a good few hours was had by all. While chatting we decided that we could help the Sandy Croft Centre by clearing their overgrown garden. The garden was large enough to keep our distance outdoors.
For the last four weeks we have been doing maintenance and enjoying the experience as a group. The value of the Shed still being fulfilled by the members of the group, enabling them to socialise together which helps wellbeing while waiting for a more permanent venue. – Roly Duke