Age Cymru AGM 27th October 2017

Age Cymru is the largest charity working for older people in Wales. Help older people avoid poverty, isolation, neglect and age discrimination

Age Cymru with support from Men’s Sheds Cymru has developed a new Men’s Shed in Caernarfon. This group is supported by a part time worker provided by Age Cymru and judging from their Facebook pictures very active. We know they are keen to participate with other North Wales groups and have taken an interest in the many groups now appearing on Anglesey.

Simon Poole our Advocate working in North Wales will give a presentation to the Age Cymru AGM about the joint working that has led to the new ‘shed’ and how we can foster an ongoing relationship to ensure Men’s Sheds are available and supported where they are needed.

The AGM is at 10:15 on 27th October 2017 at Caernarfon Football Club, The Oval, Marcus Street, Caernarfon, Gwynedd LL55 2HT

Could you tackle a Three Peaks Challenge in memory of James Caveney?

Martin Margerison of the Veterans Shed, Conwy, is looking for veterans and others to get involved in a charity event next year.


James served for twelve years in the Royal Corps of Transport and died in 2016 aged 56 of long term alcohol problems. He was an inspiration in the formation of the shed and an active fund raiser to local charities and veterans organizations. James family have asked if it is possible that we, the shed take his ashes to all three peaks as that was part of his bucket list, we have provisionally said yes.

The shed has helped charities and provided assistance to the communities since February 2016 and more importantly allowed like minded people support each other by accessing help and meeting to discuss problems and how to deal with them, to the most part quite successfully.

The Three Peaks Challenge involves climbing the three highest peaks in England, Wales and Scotland, often within 24 hours.

General outline for the challenge.
Whilst most of this administration letter is cut and pasted the overall administration is specific to the James Caveney and Veterans Shed Wales (JC&VS WALES) to raise a minimum of £3000 towards the veterans shed and charities (cancer research/Dewi Sant Hospice and MS society) supporting veterans Crest Co-operative and Mens Shed to take place in JUNE 2018.

The Three Peaks Challenge involves climbing the three highest peaks in England, Wales and Scotland, often within 24 hours.
This will be clarified by the end of 2017 as to numbers, times, people and as weather allow.
There is a 6 man team nominated by Mark “Merlin” Northfield who will do the official challenge as laid down. There will also be members of the veterans shed and their families who may wish to also do the peaks without affecting the nominated team.
The veterans will organize and run the “base/admin” camps for the nominated team.
There will be two administration teams and a support team from the veterans.
A detailed letter will follow this with detailed service support to the challenge.
Support team will operate from Wales and monitor the progress of the challengers.

CHALLENGERS. A team of 6, nominated by Mark will attempt to complete the 3 peaks challenge in a time (tbc)

ADMIN 1. Will be located at Ben Nevis to conduct and support the challengers, they will then move to Snowdon to team up with the support team

ADMIN 2. Will be located at Scarfell Pike to receive the challengers and support their admin, they will move to Snowdon with the challenge team.

SUPPORT TEAM. Will be located at Snowdon and will set up the admin camp ready to receive the challengers and admin teams.
At this point families and friends are welcome to participate in climbing Snowdon without impeding the challengers and help in the post BBQ at that location.

Registration provides guidance on organizing a safe and responsible challenge, as well as recording your challenge online, and promoting any fundraising. Certificates of completion are included.
Registration costs £6 per person, and is available online at

DRESS: As service or ex service personnel we should have our own standards of what to wear and to carry, this can be organized by the challengers, however the list below each heading is advisory for those who wish to make the ascent; under no circumstance will other people take priority over the challengers.
Kit to wear
Walking boots (mandatory, not trail shoes or trainers)
Walking socks (wearing a single pair recommended, rather than using a liner sock)
Walking trousers (lightweight trousers, not jeans or tracksuit trousers)
Sports top (not cotton)
Windproof jacket
Optional: Thermals

To carry with you
Maps Ben Nevis, OS Explorer 392 map
While Scafell Pike OS Explorer OL 6 map (South Western Lakes) .
Snowdon OL 17 OS Explorer Map .
Bergan day sack
Compass/ GPS
Hill snacks
Gloves (+ spares)
Hat (covering ears + spare)
Mobile phone (with emergency numbers)
1 to 1 radios
Spare socks
Blister plasters
Head torch
Marker panels
At the administration sites:
The sites and or accommodation TBC
Tents (numbers TBC) these will be dependent on weather and times of ascent/decent and or location, Snowdon admin will set up for challengers and admin, families will organize their own, this may include people in the admin teams!
Gazebo and wind breaks (for washing)
Sleeping bags / blanket
Cooking equipment
Food and water (challengers to have any specific food)
Washing facilities bowls soap towels
Mobile phones (with emergency numbers)
Spare equipment
First aid kit
Sunglasses & suncream
Head torch
Emergency shelter
Survival blanket
Recommended: walking poles
Food (main supplies, carry some snacks)
Changes of clothes
4 litres of water per person
Light shoes / sandals

It is proposed that a minibus will take the challengers followed with a car (breakdown).
The vets will organise their own transport to carry equipment.
Normal first parade of vehicles should be implemented; it may be pertinent to take a heavy duty jack for mini bus.
Two dedicated drivers, who won’t be walking with you, are really important to ensure your safety when travelling between the mountains.

Ben Nevis is the most popular start point, but you can choose either.
The postcode for the Ben Nevis Visitor Centre car park is PH33 6ST.
Parking here is £3 for cars, and £10 for minibuses and coaches.
Scarfell Pike: car park postcode Wasdale Head is CA20 1EX.

Snowdon: follow either the Pyg Track or Miners Track, leaving from the Pen-y-Pass car park, on the A4086. The postcode for the Pen y Pass car park at Snowdon is LL55 4NY — parking here costs £10 all day, or £4 for 4 hours.

Fuel, food and expenses: can all receipts be kept and submitted to the vets co-ordinator at the end and we will discuss payments.
A sheet of ALL participants will follow containing Name, DOB, NOK, vehicles type make VRN AND OTHER DETAILED INFORMATION.

The start will be confirmed by the challengers as “D” day.
D -1 will be the set up of Ben Nevis site and Scafell Pike
D will be the start of the challenge (TBC yet normal for the team to finish the Nevis decent by last light so as to travel to Scafell and start first light and onto Snowdon with the said 24 hours.
The Snowdon admin team will set up on this day.
Other participants will do the pre recce and ascent decent before the challengers so as not to interfere with the task in hand.

Further detailed information will follow onto interested parties.

Marty Margerison
Veterans shed Wales (Conwy)

15th November 2017 North Wales Men’s Sheds Update Meeting

All Men’s Sheds across Wales are welcome to attend Simon Poole’s update meeting. Simon will give information on the latest events, achievements and directions Men’s Sheds have taken over the last year.

Malcolm Worth, Chair of Colwyn Bay and Joint Chair of Men’s Sheds Cymru Association will be there to give the up to date news on the Association and it’s status as a Co-Operative.

The meeting will be held at Cartrefi Conwy’s HQ Morfa Gele, North Wales Business Park, Cae Eithin, Abergele LL22 8LJ, Wednesday 15th November 2017, for those of you who attended last year, it’s the same place. From about 10am till 1pm-ish

If you have anything specific you would like mentioned or discussed please contact Simon on 07736 295238 or email

World Mental Health Day

An open invitation to attend the World Mental Health Day event at Abercwmboi RFC on the 9th October 10am – 3pm.

World Mental Health Day is a global annual event aimed at raising awareness of mental health and addressing associated stigma.

This day will provide an opportunity for individuals and members of the local community to engage with providers of services, as well as giving the chance to local organisations and partners to showcase the quality and quantity of services available within Rhondda Cynon Taff and Merthyr Tydfil. There are also a number of nice activities planned for people to enjoy and its set to be a fun event with a free buffet, holistic therapies and craft.

High Sheriff of Dyfed awards Men’s Sheds

It never made our website at the time but we’re delighted to share news of an award Men’s Sheds Cymru received in April 2017 from the High Sheriff of Dyfed. Every year this honorary distinction is placed upon individuals and organisations who have made a significant contribution to charity and voluntary work within the community. It was wonderful to see the warmth with which Sheds were regarded by the hundreds of people who attended the event. Diolch yn fawr iawn!

Men’s Sheds – a success in Wales

When the team was put in place at the beginning of December 2014 the task of communicating the concept of Men’s Sheds across Wales and ensuring there were at least 25 operating Men’s Sheds in less than 3 years was challenging.

The initial project period comes to an end in August 2017 but we should be able to stay on for a few months more. The success has been that we no longer have to explain the concept of Men’s Sheds. It is now well known amongst people and organisations wherever we go. The bigger success is that there are 35 Men’s Sheds across Wales and 4 Women’s groups we know of in Porth, Colwyn Bay, Tonypandy and Rhyl. You can see a full list of Men’s Sheds here

However, more than the numbers, the success has been that Men’s Sheds are seen as a practical way to encourage friendship, companionship and lifelong learning. This is what men have said from our surveys:

Are you up for the Coracle Challenge?

Richard White of Ferryside Men’s Shed bravely took up a challenge of a coracle race from Frome Men’s Shed. This took place in July as part of the Carmarthen River Festival. Only good news and Richard shook off the challenge from the outsiders.

Could we make this into a bigger event with many more “sheds” in Wales and beyond competing? If we could help you build your coracle, keep you afloat and navigate in a race would you join in? We could arrange a race venue next year but we need some numbers to make this work. If you are interested contact Simon, Mark or Fred from the Project Team.

Awards for All Wales

The Big Lottery Fund has announced recently that the maximum grant payable under the Awards for All scheme has doubled to £10,000. The application process has also been simplified. Remember to go to the Awards for All Wales website for more information and to download the new application form.
Men’s Sheds across Wales have been successful in funding their projects this way. Some have not applied as they thought it was necessary to be a Charity. This is not the case. If you need help designing your project and completing the application contact the Men’s Sheds Team.