Farewell Kate.

This month we say goodbye to Kate Gordon, after two and a half years working with UK Men’s Sheds Association she departs to work with the Canal and River Trust in the North West.

Many of you will have seen Kate at our events, ShedFest and even in your Sheds as she did many tours to meet Ambassadors and the Sheds they are engaged with.  

Kate’s work has had a massive impact on the support UKMSA has been able to provide and will provide in the future.  Her legacy will not be restricted to Ambassadors as she played a vital role in supporting the development of resources and development of Committees, Events and particularly this year with virtual ShedFest.  One particular project she supported was the development of a Shed in West Byfleet at an Anchor Residential Home; this is a fantastic partnership and Anchor Homes, along with many of our partners and funders have paid tribute to her energy and support.

Many of you will have seen Kate at our events, ShedFest and even in your Sheds

Charlie Bethel, Chief Officer for UKMSA said, ‘Kate has been instrumental in developing and growing the Shed Ambassador programme, a vital piece of work as we try to help grow the Shed movement across the UK.  Her commitment to her work and Sheds has been exemplary and she really threw herself in to everything she did, whether that was ShedFest, the Ambassador programme or Shed Happens where she has supported Patrick Abrahams from the beginning… It will certainly be strange to not hear her on a Wednesday morning when the show is on. During Kate’s tenure we have seen incredible growth in the UK with over 200 Sheds opening, more people going to Sheds and the development of our Health and Wellbeing Committee and Resources group.

During Kate’s tenure we have seen incredible growth in the UK

Charlie continued, ‘Whilst we we will certainly miss Kate, her energy and passion for the Shed movement, I am really please for her that she has been able to grow over the last two years and that she has a new and exciting journey ahead of her. I am also sure that she will stay in touch and perhaps there will be some going working in the future.’

‘A huge thank you for all your hard work and keeping the rest of us in check, Good luck I am sure you will be fantastic with the Canal and Rivers Trust!’

WOW! What an incredible Shedventure I’ve had over the last after two and a half years! I’ve never laughed or learnt so much – from you, the vibrant movement of social entrepreneurs all striving to bring about positive change for yourselves, your comrades and your communities.

During my time with UK Men’s Sheds Association, I have visited over 50 Sheds, attended many regional Shed events and met hundreds of Shedders from across the UK!

My role has been as diverse as the Shed movement and I’d like to say a BIG thank everyone who has contributed to my journey at UKMSA. In particular, I’d like to thank all of the Ambassador volunteers that I’ve worked so closely with along the way. Your time, commitment, wealth of experience and knowledge has continued to blow me away. I’ve thoroughly I’ve enjoyed working with you all, as an extension of the team to in supporting the Shed movement at a local level.

I look forward to seeing how the UKMSA Volunteer programme evolves as I am confident that Sheds helping, connecting and learning from each other – locally and across the UK is an important evolution of Sheds surviving and thriving long term. It has always been quite clear to me that if you put all the Shedders in the room together – you’d solve any problem – Shed related or not!

2020 has been unbelievably tough for Sheds and for us all individually – but there are now hopeful messages of light at the end of the tunnel and so I wish you all well as we all edge closer towards a resolution that will see the Shed movement back on its feel stronger than ever. After all – Sheds will be at the heart of what’s needed for recovering after this strange and challenging year.  

And where am I going next exactly? Well – aside from a new found of love Sheds I also have been very passionate about the waterways & canal boats since a very young child – and in October I was approached by the Canal & River Trust (CRT) to consider becoming part of their North West team – an offer I couldn’t refuse!

You all inspire me and I will miss talking Sheds every day – but I’ve made many friends along the way and when I am finally allowed to leave Manchester again – I will be sure to look up any Sheds as a travel about. Rest assured, Sheds are in the blood now and I will continue to bang the sound of the Shed movement drum wherever go…including in my new role with CRT who own lots of premises!! 🙂  

Good luck everyone and THANK YOU for being truly brilliant.