Local Charities Day

Led by the ​Office ​for Civil ​Society, Local Charities day is being held on Friday 15th December. The aim of the day is to highlight the work of small charities that are making a huge difference in their communities. It is also a chance for individuals who are making a special effort devoting their time in helping others and for those unsung heroes to celebrate their achievements.

Many Men in Shed projects operate as small charities, often choosing the Charitable Incorporated Organisation structure which provides both a registered charity number and incorporated status that gives protection to trustees.

Within this small charity structure projects make big differences to the people they support. On Local Charities Day the Essex Shed Network would like to recognise and thank the many volunteers that support Sheds in Essex  and across the UK.


Hardie Park Shed recruiting Shedders

“Hardie Park have some men, they have a shed, they have some tools – now they just need to make it work.”

In order to run the Hardie Park Shed they require trained supervisors. If you think this might be for you then click REGISTER to show your interest. If you would like to pop along to one of the shed sessions to see if it’s something you want to get involved with then pop down on a Friday morning at 10am.

Training will take place in January and the Shed will open in February on a Monday and Friday. There are two shed sessions being held each day and the cost will be £2 per session which includes tea and coffee.

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Shedders Fair

Shedders Fair took place on the 23rd of November in Northampton and was attended by members of the Essex Sheds, including some from Maldon, Cressing Temple Community, ‘Beacon’ Shed Thundersley and West Essex Sheds.

It was a chance for the Shedders to come together and to network and share ideas with likeminded folk from all over the UK.

The Essex shedders were treated to a buffet lunch and a chance to ask questions and learn about how the Shed Network was developed and where it is today. There were several demonstrations of advanced woodworking tools and group sessions were run with information on the future development of the Shed Network nationally.

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Evaluation Report

In 2017 we carried out an evaluation of the Essex Shed Network and the impact that Shed projects have on Shedders health and wellbeing as well as case studies on individual shedders.

Results showed a range of benefits to Shedders including increased community involvement, confidence in social situations, levels of volunteering,  improvements in their day to day physical and metal health and decreased feelings of loneliness.

The Evaluation report can be downloaded from the resources page of our website

Men’s Shed ‘Toolkit’ Launched

New Resource launched to help Men build sheds

The Essex Shed Network is launching a new Shed ‘Toolkit’ to support communities in Essex to set up Men in Shed projects. The Toolkit which covers topics like finding a venue, health and safety and policy development, promotion and funding also highlights the importance of Shed projects to men at risk of social isolation.

The launch of this new resource coincides with International Men’s Day on the 19th November 2017. This international awareness day highlights the health inequalities that exist between men and women including the global difference between life expectancies for men and women and increased male suicide rates.

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Essex Shed Network Quiz

As part of the Essex County Council’s ‘Art of the Possible’ festival, the Essex Shed Network (ESN) facilitated by the Maldon & District CVS, held a Quiz Night on Monday 30th October, at Witham Public Hall. It was a chance for shedders to meet and talk to others and also the opportunity to learn more about the Men in Shed Projects.

There were six teams present who were all competing for the winning prize! Out of these six teams there were five Shed’s represented, including Cressing, Maldon, Thundersley, West Essex and Dengie.

It was a fun evening which received lots of positive feedback. Fellow shedder’s said they found the quiz ‘interesting,’ ‘informative’ and ‘entertaining.’ The winning team were the ‘Famous Five’.

Those who attended agreed that the questions were challenging, yet very organised and well delivered. Overall, it was a great quiz night and a bigger battle of the ‘Shed’s heads’ in the future, is definitely on the cards!

Community project celebrates independence

Shed independece cropped for webRepresentatives from the Maldon Shed were at Maldon District Council Offices last week to celebrate their ‘graduation’ as an independent community group.

The project, which launched three years ago, has until this summer been hosted by local charity Maldon and District Community Voluntary Services. As a hosted project they received support to obtain start up funding, to develop their policies and procedures, attract new members and to promote themselves to the community. As the group developed they also received support to set up as an independent group. The Maldon Shed reached that milestone shortly before their third birthday in August 2017.

The event at Maldon District Council was an opportunity to demonstrate the skills of the ‘Shedders’ with Shed creations on show. Members of the public were able to buy products or commission bespoke items in time for Christmas.

The event was also an opportunity for the Maldon Shed to recognise the support received from Maldon District Council, who provided the old mortuary building that the project operates out of.

The Maldon Shed is open on Mondays, Wednesday and Saturdays at the Old Mortuary building in Maldon Cemetery. For more information visit www.maldonshed.btck.co.uk

£1,000 available for local projects

A new fund from Recycle for Essex has been launched that might be of interest to Essex Sheds. The Essex Community Reuse Fund wants to support local projects that

  • Inspire people and communities to be creative and sustainable with their waste
  • Provide skills and opportunities to build an environmentally sustainable community
  • Make use of recycled, reused or reclaimed materials from the household
  • Reduce the amount of reusable household waste being thrown away

If your shed takes in household waste to refurbish and up-cycle take a look at whether this fund could be for you. They are looking to support local ideas which will inspire people and communities to be creative and sustainable with their household waste and provide skills and opportunities to build an environmentally sustainable community.

Pledges of up to £1,000 match funding are available. Find out more here

Please note: This fund is only available in the Essex County Council area!

The European Woodworking Show

This weekend saw the European Woodworking show take place at Cressing Temple Barns in Essex. The Essex Shed Network hosted a stall and display at the entrance to talk to show goers about Men in Sheds.

Over the weekend Shedders from five Essex Sheds took turns in manning the stall. There was an opportunity to get to know each other and discuss the differences between their sheds but also to talk to hundreds of people about Sheds.

Visitors to the stall included people from Sheds in other parts of the UK and wider keen to know what is happening here in Essex, local people interested in getting involved and tradesmen/skilled craftsman finding out more.

Over the weekend we spoke to hundreds of people with some key contacts being made. Some quotes from the day:

“Pleased I came, I learnt lots about Sheds” 
“Really impressed with the infrastructure for Sheds in Essex”
“I’m looking for somewhere I can keep my hands busy”
“We saw you here last time, great to see the project is doing so well”

Essex Shed Network is hosting a Quiz Night

Quiz night words and fireworks 

The Essex Shed Network, as part of Essex County Council’s Art of the possible festival, is hosting a Quiz night on Monday 30th October at Witham Public Hall.

It is an opportunity to test your quizzing knowledge but also a chance to meet the Essex Shedders. Existing Shed members can network, share their expertise and meet fellow Shedders. Potential Shedders can come along and learn more about Essex Sheds and hopefully get inspired to get involved.

To book a place visit the Art of the possible website

Or for more information please call: 01621 851891