RSL flags Mens Shed for old hanger

A Mens Shed is being mooted for the disused and structurally unsound war-era Bellman Hanger at the Evans Head Aerodrome as a way to get ex-servicemen out an about.

Secretary of the Woodburn/Evans Head RSL Sub-Branch, John Saunders said it would be set up as a workshop where returned servicemen could undertake small building projects. The shed would also be available for the wider community to use, with a small fee for all users.

The idea is to get the old diggers out of their homes, said John. To stop them looking at four walls and drinking themselves to death. Its a mens health issue.

John said anything that was made in the workshop could be sold at markets and money earned used for maintenance and upkeep of the shed itself, with any leftover going to RSL charities.

John said the Sub-Branch had around 100 members not all living in Evans Head and believed a Mens Shed would be well-utilised.

John said the Department of Veterans Affairs provided funding for the Mens Shed and the Sub-Branch would also be seeking funding from other sources to assist Richmond Valley Council to restore the structurally unsound Bellman Hangar.

Richmond Valley Council general manager Brian Wilkinson said Council had just obtained a $50,000 heritage grant to restore the hangar and he hoped preliminary investigations would start within the next few months.

He said several groups had expressed an interest in using the hangar and the RSLs submission would be given due consideration, along with the others.


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