Welcome to the club

Two Octobers ago, one of our Community Co-ordinators realised that a pair of older gentlemen he knew were both passionate about old motorbikes but didn’t know each other. So he decided to introduce them. They got on like a house on fire, and soon our co-ordinator found himself looking for a venue where the two ex-bikers could meet up each week.  So began what is now Man Friday, a group for mature gentlemen that meets up every Friday morning at the Focal Centre in Lindley.

Two years on, it’s grown well beyond two men and an imaginary motorbike. It has 27 members who attend as and when they want, with usually 10 of them attending in any one week, and the chat isn’t just about motorbikes anymore. 

Reaching out to the community 

Occasionally the men go out on a trip, most often when there’s a local information fair on, as there was at Briar Court and Lindley Salvation Army in March and July last year. But generally, they’re happy just to meet each other, feast on chocolate biscuits, and chat about whatever takes their fancy. It even has members who attend virtually.

Online group

The committee have set up an online group for all the members to keep in touch with each other during the week, and anyone who cannot come in person on Friday can still join the group over a video call.

What’s on offer?

The point of the group is to provide a welcoming environment for any gent, whatever his background. We have members who are recently bereaved or suffering from early-stage dementia; members who are otherwise isolated and lonely; and many members who can’t remember why they came originally but keep coming anyway (probably for the very superior biscuits…) 

Join the group

The group is often joined by representatives of local services, making it a useful place to drop in and get information about other activities and groups in Lindley, or just general advice for any query about services in the area.

Community Plus are there, but so are from time to time the Social Prescribing Link Workers, the local police officers, councillors, church leaders, and various charities. The mans group is part of a wider Fabulous Fridays at the Focal Centre, where you can learn new craft skills, have a taster exercise session and much more. The pilot scheme is running from the 26th of January to the 19th of April.

How can you get involved?

Anyone interested in attending can just come along and call in – you’ll be sure of a warm welcome – or contact Community Plus directly. The group meets from 9.30am until 11 every Friday; the Focal Centre is on New Hey Road in Lindley, next to the Salvation Army.

There’s ample parking space thanks to the Salvation Army, disabled ramps all the way from the car park to the building providing easy wheelchair access, and fully accessible facilities within the building. To find out more about the Focal Centre visit Facebook.