Mankinis, Conkers & Scooters – A Celebration of Men’s Sheds at the Senedd

A Senedd event saw Men’s Sheds from across Wales gather to celebrate the achievements of the rapidly expanding Men’s Sheds Cymru movement.

Sponsored by Ogmore Assembly Member Huw Irranca-Davies, the fun-filled event coincided with International Men’s Day marking the worldwide positive value men bring to the world.

Shed members passionately told their stories and shared their journeys of how Men’s Sheds have made a difference and positive change to their personal life and wellbeing.

Skilled ‘Shedders’ from near and far showcased many of their crafted items whilst chatting and networking with members of neighbouring Sheds. A friendly ‘conkers’ competition followed where the large audience were invited to take part.

Caerau and Pontycymer Sheds’ joint mini play called ‘Welcome a New Member, “Sion” to the Shed’ received rapturous applause after a shedder wearing a mankini rode a scooter across the stage. There was also a screening of a film from one of the newest groups ‘Head in the Sheds’ who are based in Parc Prison and also a short film from Caerau Men’s Shed – ‘Shed Life’.

Supported by many Assembly Members, including Deputy Minister Jane Hutt AM and Health Minister Vaughan Gethin, talks were also given by Alan Lawrie Executive Director Cwm Taf Health Board, Sian Morgan Chief Executive Hafan Cymru and also event organiser Robert Visintainer from Men’s Shed Cymru.

A big supporter of the Men’s Shed movement, event sponsor Huw Irranca-Davies AM said following the event: “I was delighted to sponsor this major event hosting Mens Sheds from all over Wales including some of our guys from across the Ogmore valleys. They did us proud!

It showcased the incredible things these groups do, under the umbrella of the small but dynamic team of Men’s Sheds Cymru. And the first in Wales was in Tondu. My thanks to Robert and everyone involved for providing an amazing, humbling and inspiring day.”