A regular blog where Tessa travels the highways and byways of the South West meeting people from all walks of life and Introducing them to the Mindline Family of Mental Health Helplines.
Normally, when I prepare for a Mindline promotional event I fill my Car full of boxes of leaflets, booklets banners and tables. However today was different. My beloved Ford Cortina which has served me so faithfully for so many years failed to start.
I was dismayed. Not only was mourning the passing of my beautiful Car but also I may be missing a rare opportunity to visit a place I spent many happy afternoons in my childhood reading so many exciting stories by a diverse range of authors, Bridgwater Library.
Putting my mourning to one side I decided to take the bus instead obviously having to reduce the amount of materials I usually take with me.
It was an unseasonably wet and windy day in Bridgwater but this was soon brightened up for me by the cheerful staff and the grand old building that is Bridgwater Library.
Setting my stand, I couldn’t help but be distracted by this awe-inspiring place. Built in 1906 it has stood stoic against two World Wars, financial crisis’s and an uncountable amount of cultural changes. No matter how many changes Bridgwater has seen it’s library has remained a cornerstone of the community.
The morning was quiet with mostly young families visiting. The young ‘uns helped themselves to our pens and the other promotional goodies I lay out at these events. I was amazed how open the parents where with their children about mental health. Years ago, parents would have quickly escorted their children away from a mental health promotional stand such as ours out of fear of awkward questions, now they will happily talk to their children with us about it as normal as any other kind of illness.
The afternoon was busier with a great deal of interest in Mindline and local Minds.
Before I set off to leave I looked around libraries notice boards. I was pleasantly surprised about how much the library has to offer far more than just book borrowing, there are endless activities and groups that can be a valuable signpost to callers seeking a local interest group.
I packed up my stall, put up my brolly and dashed out to catch the bus, narrowly missing a horrendous down pour of rain. On my way home I made a note to myself to visit the library again very soon.
Mindline provides three mental health helplines.
Mindline Somerset: 01823 276 892. 8pm-11pm Tues,Wed,Fri,Sat,Sun.
Mindline South Devon & Torbay: 0300 330 5464. 8pm-11pm Tues,Wed,Fri,Sat,Sun.
Mindline Trans+: 0300 330 5468. 8pm-12 Mondays & Fridays.