Corrie star opens Ashton’s new MIND centre
Friday 9th September 2016 @ 18:36 by Adam Higgins
Ashton Droylsden Dukinfield Gorton & Openshaw Hyde Mossley & Saddleworth News Stalybridge
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Official opening… the cutting of the ribbon at the new centre.

Tameside, Oldham and Glossop MIND has opened an all-new centre at its Katherine Street base in Ashton.

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Beverley and Will are welcomed to TOG Mind for the official opening ceremony

Coronation Street’s Beverley Callard (Liz McDonald) teamed up with actor Will Mellor (Hollyoaks, Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps) to open a new centre in Ashton on Friday.

The two celebrities were special guests at Tameside, Oldham and Glossop MIND’s Katherine Street base to open the new centre as it extends its services across the region.

Over the past five years, the amount and range of mental health and wellbeing services that TOG Mind have developed has grown substantially as it addresses an increasing need in our communities.

To deliver these services, the Wellbeing Centre has grown too and an extension to the building was officially opened on Friday.

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It’s an honour… Beverley and Will cut the ribbon.

Beverley, who is a national ambassador for MIND, and Will, said they were both honoured and privileged to cut the ribbon and officially open the new centre.

Beverley, herself diagnosed with very severe clinical depression six years ago, has battled back to recover and become an ambassador herself to fight against the stigma associated with mental health problems.

She told us: “When I was invited here to perform the ceremony I was very honoured. It’s an amazing place, I am so impressed, and anyone who needs help can come along here and get some advice and just have a chat in an informal setting which is fantastic.

“I’m an ambassador for MIND and have used their services as a patient and I always try to help when I can at events like this.

“Somewhere like this helps people to know that they are not alone. The statistics are that one in four people are touched by mental health problems and if we can get young people to come in and just meet other like-minded people that is hugely helpful.

“There is a stigma with people with mental health problems and we need to keep on fighting that and places like this do just that.”

She was also outspoken in her view that funding – and government funding – for such services was vital and highly critical of Secretary of State for Health Jeremy Hunt for failing, she said, to provide enough funding.

“He should be sacked,” she stated bluntly.

But the key message she wanted to get across to those suffering with mental health issues was that, as she herself had experienced, everyone can recover with the right help and support.

“You can get well and if you find yourself slipping back there are people there who can support you and there can be a positive outcome,” she stressed.

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On tour… Beverley and Will find out more about some of the services available at the MIND centre in Ashton.

Will was taking a short break from filming the second series of ‘No Offence’ in Manchester to be at the opening, and dashing straight back to be on set following the tour of the centre.

“I always like to help out local communities and especially an event like this where so many of the services are donation based and where there is a lot of voluntary work,” he said.

Having worked closely with Beverley too in a number of series he was delighted to help and support her to open the centre.

They were accompanied by civic dignitaries, including the Mayor of High Peak George Wharmby, Deputy Mayor of Tameside Cllr Janet Cooper and other local councillors.

A tour of the new centre and all of the many services provided by MIND followed, with Bob Mercer, chair, and Jenny Robinson, CEO, giving welcoming talks.

Read more in this Thursday’s (September 15) Tameside Reporter and Glossop Chronicle.

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Tameside Reporter editor Nigel Skinner talks to Beverley while Tameside Radio’s Rokib Uddin chats to Will.