The arrival of a Mens’ Shed has been a Glenkens success story of recent years. The Mens’ Shed group, found behind the Old Smiddy in Balmaclellan, have established themselves as a popular and well used place for a whole range of group and solo trades and activities.
The range of activities hosted in the Mens’ Shed is now going to increase even further following the purchase a suite of cold metalworking tools and equipment. This equipment will form the centrepiece of the new metalworking room, allowing local metalworking skills and heritage agricultural practices to be used in the Mens’ Shed, training up a new generation in these skills.
The Glenkens Mens’ Shed Metalwork Project has been supported by a grant of £5,000 through the Galloway Glens ‘Our Heritage’ Small Grants Scheme.
The Galloway Glens administrator, Jude Crooks, met members of The Glenkens men’s Shed in the cold metal workshop at Balmaclellan to present the cheque in front of a perfect backdrop of the Colchester Chipmaster lathe which is one of the first restoration projects for the metalworking project.
Chris Jowsey, Treasurer at the Glenkens Mens’ Shed, said:
“The Galloway Glens funded Men’s Shed Metal Workshop Project will be brilliant for the Glenkens!
Its lasting legacy will be a well-equipped, safe and secure workshop with the ability to help preserve and build traditional skills, enabling the Shed to attract more members from the local community and help combat rural isolation. The project puts the building blocks in place for developing the Shed in support of the Smiddy’s Heritage Hub aspirations to provide opportunities for youngsters whilst offering the local community a chance to maintain their rural skills. It’ll also help make the Shed more financially sustainable and give existing members new and exciting prospects for their own projects”
Jude Crooks, Galloway Glens Administrator and lead contact for the Small Grants Scheme, said:
This project will help people and communities in the area to connect to their heritage of the essential skills prevalent in rural and agricultural communities such as the Glenkens by offering the opportunities to maintain, develop and pass on their traditional skills through a range of metal work activities. Many thanks as always to the National Lottery Heritage Fund Scotland for the funding and for the support from partners including Dumfries & Galloway Council and the Galloway & Southern Ayrshire UNESCO Biosphere.