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Weekly sessions launched to get men talking

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New weekly sessions have been launched in Middlesbrough to help get men talking - and save lives.

Andy's Man Club offers men a space where they can talk and benefit from peer-to-peer support based around talking sessions every Monday.

Men's mental health has for many years been a taboo subject with many suffering in silence.

Suicide is the biggest killer of men under 45 and the impact of the last year will have only exacerbated the issue.

Andy's Man Club began after Andrew Roberts sadly took his own life in 2016 aged just 23.

The ‘talking group, a place for men to come together in a safe environment to talk about issues and problems they have faced or are currently facing', was formed by Andy's brother-in-law Luke Ambler and mother-in-law Elaine.

Offering judgment-free support in a non-clinical setting nationwide, the project now has 44 branches with three in the north east in Hartlepool, Sunderland and now Middlesbrough.

Newport ward Councillor Chris Cooke has helped support the initiative locally, and is urging men facing mental health issues to get talking.

Chris's own father sadly took his own life when Chris was a teenager.

He said: "As someone who has lost his own father to mental health issues this is a subject incredibly close to me.

"For many years I would hear people say 'I just wish he had told us how he felt'.

"It wasn't until my own difficult experiences with mental health that I understood the worries and feelings associated with talking about this subject.

"I hope that Andy's Man Club can go some way in helping men to understand they are not alone in how they feel and that there is no stigma.

"I am proud to have become one of the organisers for the Middlesbrough branch and will be on hand to offer support to other men."

Andy's Man Club is based at Streets Ahead, 109-111 Parliament Road, Middlesbrough TS1 4JE. Meetings take place every Monday from 7pm. For further information email

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