Sleights Youth Shed Opened Last Night

A night well done!

Half a dozen. Others from Sleights and the hinterland are now expressing interest from their youngsters and themselves. It is work – like the adult Sheds – to benefit and develop Shedders who come.

We started with a ring of chairs to meet each other and encourage saying Hi to someone they did not know. We saw on tables all the kit that had been brought in for the Shed (some bought, some gifted) and pulled things out and unpacked some weird items. The two girl Shedders tried the “heavy” electric drills and later went on to add wheels to a workbench brought from Staithes Shed they had been given. A bit of sawing and drilling and screwing plus some problem solving.

Three of the youngsters turned to an imagination game that we think might have been “Shops”. Their secret hoard was boxed and sealed by them for next time! The two girls and the lad had crossed paths at the KMG visit to the fire station recently but now they were working together – fabulous.

We talked a little about rules – them suggesting – which was such a positive eye-opener for the adults present. Two played garden chess indoors and one was trying to assemble a sophisticated marble roller coaster (with Sarah who had forgotten her glasses!).

Ideas came from the Y-Shedders. Two memorable ones we are acting on right now are a request to have Wii sports (the active ones!) and to build dens (designed ones that can be quickly assembled and dismantled in sections. They also want a few big cushions.

One of the girl Shedders may be doing a drawing of her idea for a den. We are looking at a workshop day for this (as part of Kidz Making Good). Hopefully sooner than later.

WE ALSO WANT access to a wii-set. Do you have one in the back of your cupboard that could be given or loaned? We have a computer projector so it can be “big screen stuff”. 

There was more, but we hope you get the picture, so here are a few.

The flag was raised

Hmmm. Lost their marbles

Headlamp torches are fun.

Chess with mate

The secret, sealed package. Keep hands off!

Inside the mystery package. None the wiser.



Our thanks to Sarah Savage (a mum) and Bob Hodge (a Shedder with Graham) for their engagement with the first half dozen Young Shedders.

To be clear that whilst Janine Pemberton (associated with Whitby Eskmouth Scouts at the Sleights Scout Hut) is not involved at the sharp end on Fridays, she has been of immense support in getting the Youth Shed “across the line”. That is very important to say.

The Youth Shed is not Scouts or School. However, we have appreciated the encouragement of both KMG and this Shed by Sleights Primary School (Mr. Scott Grason) and Eskdale School (Mr. Ian Bloor). This is another important thing to say on Graham and Janine’s part.

The Youth Shed has the ethos very much of the Men’s (and Women’s) Sheds concept fostered in UK by the UK Men’s Shed Association. We thank them because what is being done in Sleights is novel in the UKMSA movement in many ways and whilst they are not “responsible” for individual Sheds (550+) we share support in specialist areas like this. We thank Kate Gordon for her encouragement on behalf of UKMSA.

We thank Karen Atkinson of NYCC Stronger Communities for their investment in pump priming the Shed at the very earliest point when the idea was shared with them. It was not conceived as a component in the Connecting Community in Sleights project but as the project has developed it has become a part of it, along with other village initiatives.

We thank Volunteer It Yourself who ran two workshops 15 months ago with Eskdale School students and Eskmouth Whitby Scouts. It was from that that the idea of KMG and this Shed came.

We thank those who in the background have been foreground supporters. Some in the adult Sheds, some like Charlotte Angus of CaVCA Totally Socially who gave their professionalism but mainly their heart. Practical support from North Yorkshire Youth (Ian Kirchner-Waines).

It may sound strange (!?!) but we thank the Methodist Insurance Company who have insured (and encouraged through David Lofthouse) Shed development since Sleights Area Men’s Shed began using the Chapel hall in Littlebeck. Sheds was “what?” to them when we started (like NYCC Stronger Communities too) and we have ALL grown together in the understanding of tackling the unusual that has little track record. ALL have invested in Whitby community in different ways.

We move forward now welcoming what has happened to bring it about. We need, and anticipate, help in various ways (including the Friday nights amongst family, friends and community.) of others.

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