A MAN who suffered from depression has won backing to launch a new communal shed for retired men.
Martin Corrick, 68, is the founder of the Gosport Shed, which wants to set up a workshop-type facility for retired men to battle social isolation and depression.
The launch yesterday saw more than 30 people attend, including Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage and the chairman of Fareham and Gosport Clinical Commissioning Group, Doctor David Chilvers.
Mr Corrick told those gathered at the open meeting how he and his wife moved to Gosport five years ago.
But he said did not socialise, which led to him being diagnosed with depression.
He said: ‘We’ve discovered that throughout the population there are a great many people who after retirement age get lonely, get isolated, get ill. The rate at which men get ill is double that of women.
‘Women are much better at social things, about joining up to clubs.
‘Men tend not to, they stay at home, they often get ill. They may have an alcohol problem after a while.’
The shed will offer a place for men to do practical work and socialise.
Mr Corrick is urging retired men to get out of their homes to join the project, which is looking for help finding premises.
County council data from 2010 shows that there are 23,050 people in Gosport aged over 55.
And there are 27 people aged 65 and over to every 100 of working age.
By 2018 that is set to swell to 39 people aged over 65 to every 100.
Dr Chilvers said he is looking forward to being able to tell patients about the scheme, which has seen success in other areas and abroad.
He said: ‘Martin’s identified a way forward for a very big need in our area.
‘There’s a lot of depression, which we have limited ways of treating.
‘This is an ideal way of both identifying it, supporting it and treating it.
‘A lot of the time we’re managing symptoms of depression, as opposed to treating it properly – this is a way of getting rid of the root cause.’
The scheme has had help from Gosport Borough Council and Gosport Voluntary Action.
For more call Mr Corrick on 07889 762 425 or email him at email@example.com