A CAMPAIGN to help tackle loneliness and isolation over Christmas has launched in Barrhead.

Age Scotland bean its festive campaign No One Should Have No One at Barrhead Men’s Shed.

The charity’s chief executive Brian Sloan praised the work of the shed, which provides a space for retired men and women to meet, socialise and share skills.

Around 30 ‘shedders’ gave demonstrations of their work, which ranges from woodwork to painting and sewing.

It is part of a growing movement of Men’s Sheds, with around 110 across the country.

Mr Sloan said: “Our latest research shows that 60,000 older Scots will spend Christmas Day alone – an increase of 50 per cent on just two years ago. Winter can exacerbate feelings of loneliness as people retreat indoors, and this can have a huge impact on mental and physical health.

“We want to raise awareness of loneliness and issue a call to action to people to reach out to those who are on their own.

“We’re delighted to support projects such as Barrhead Men’s Shed that are making a real difference to their communities. We should have sheds like this all over Scotland.”

Age Scotland supports Men’s Sheds across the country, providing advice and grants towards equipment and other costs.

Its recent research found that 80,000 older people in Scotland said that they felt especially lonely over Christmas, with the same number saying their television is their main form of company.

Alex Storrie, chairman of Barrhead Men’s Shed, said: “We’ve got a really successful group here, but there are a lot of lonely people, and we haven’t reached them all yet.

“I recently heard loneliness described as a disease. We’re determined to do what we can to help people with this disease, but we can only do that with funding and support.”

Click here for more information on Barrhead Men's Shed.