Mans­field Men’s Shed re­mem­bers its founder

Mansfield Courier - - OPINIONS/PEOPLE -

IN 2000, Don Hodge met with the Mans­field Shire Coun­cil to dis­cuss start­ing a men’s shed.

Don en­vi­sioned a place where lo­cals would come to­gether – a back­yard at­mos­phere that would fos­ter a sense of com­pan­ion­ship for those who might oth­er­wise feel iso­lated.

Some 17 years later, the Mans­field Men’s Shed was of­fi­cially recog­nised as the Don Hodges Me­mo­rial build­ing - with a spe­cial sign recog­nis­ing the shed as such.

“I un­for­tu­nately never got to meet Don,” Mans­field Men’s Shed vice pres­i­dent Bill Co­p­ley said.

“His name is leg­endary here – he is part of shed folk­lore.”

Don passed away in 2016 - but his mem­ory was hon­oured on the day by his wife Bar­bara, and daugh­ters Lisa O’Dwyer and Tracey Ship­ley.

“My dad al­ways said, if you want some­thing, you go out and achieve it, and you don’t give up un­til you get a re­sult,” Lisa re­called.

“The Mans­field Men’s Shed is a per­fect ex­am­ple of that.”

Mans­field Shire coun­cil­lor Paul Sladdin re­mem­bered the time he was first ap­proached by Don.

“I can still re­mem­ber that day, al­most 20 years ago,” Paul said dur­ing the un­veil­ing.

“There is no doubt - this shed would not be here to­day with­out the in­flu­ence of Don.”

RE­MEM­BER­ING DON: The Mans­field Men’s Shed was of­fi­cially un­veiled as the Don Hodges Me­mo­rial build­ing at a spe­cial cer­e­mony ear­lier this month. Pic­tured (from left) are MSC coun­cil­lor Paul Sladdin, Lisa O’Dwyer, Tracey Ship­ley, Bar­bara Hodge, Mathew O’Dwyer and Mans­field Men’s Shed vice pres­i­dent Bill Co­p­ley.

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