A simple solution for tackling loneliness has been introduced to Warwick, with the introduction of a ‘happy to chat’ bench in St Nicholas Park.
The designated seat has been put in place by Warwick District Council’s Green Spaces Team and mirrors successful schemes in other towns across the UK, with the idea of getting people talking. The bench is located in the wooden shelters behind the Crazy Golf and has a sign that reads; “The ‘Happy to Chat’ bench, sit here if you don’t mind someone stopping to say hello.”
Warwick District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Neighbourhood Services, Councillor David Norris commented;
“With a focus in the new decade on the importance of taking care of our mental health, I very much hope that people in our community who feel isolated in their daily lives will use the bench to make connections with someone new or simply enjoy passing the time of day!”
Stephanie Bennett from the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers Museum in Warwick added;
“The staff at the Museum think that the ‘happy to chat’ bench is a great idea. We know that there are a many people in our town who are lonely and have very little social interaction in their lives. This is one small step which could make a big difference.”
Pictured enjoying a chat on the bench are staff and volunteers from the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers Museum; Stephanie Bennett, Patricia King and David Baynham.