OVER 300 people flocked to the city to take part in a shed festival to reduce social isolation.

ShedFest took place at Worcester Arena yesterday (September 3) which saw ‘shedders’ come together and promote men’s mental wellbeing.

Barrie Ashford, aged 75, claims becoming part of the community saved his marriage.

Mr Ashford, vice chair of Aldridge Shed said: “It’s been the biggest turning point in my life. It changed my life. I’m in the situation that if I hadn’t joined the shed my wife would have walked out on me.”


‘Urgent improvement necessary’ at Worcester takeaway following zero-star rating

Agony of Jamie, 5, whose skin blisters at the slightest touch

This was Worcester’s second year hosting the festival.

Laura Winkley, membership and support officer said: “There’s been a huge growth in men’s sheds over the years.

“Every shed is full of stories on how they have changed people’s lives. It’s been life saving for some and benefitted their mental health."

Chris Fisher, The Blind Wood Turner, delivered an inspirational keynote speech at the event.

Mr Fisher is the first blind accredited wood turner in the UK and has been doing it for almost six years.

His wife, Nicola said: “Chris is unique. He is one of a kind. I’m very proud of him. He self-taught after becoming blind.

“The reason he loves to do this is to show other disabled people that they shouldn’t give up. It’s a big trauma and easy to give up. But he shows everyone that you can still carry on doing what you want.”

Nathan Sarea, chairman of trustees who created ShedFest in 2015, said: “The event keeps on growing. It was designed to bring together everyone who supports sheds and wants to mingle and forge friendships.”