The modern day Father Christmas - Levin Menzshed - has been forced to postpone a planned open day this weekend due to fears it would potentially help spread coronavirus.

The membership of the Menzshed, which has been going for 11 years now, is mostly made up of men aged in the 70s, 80s and 90s doing good deeds in the community.

Menzshed Trust chairman John Shearman said the planned open day was to be have been held between 10am and 2pm, and would have been a chance to showcase to the public exactly what they do and where they do it.

The Menzshed is a charitable organisation that does a large amount of community work. Recent examples are constructing tracks for the Department of Conservation, and also work at preschools in the area.


The men were always breathing new life into anything bent or broken, like old furniture, and boasted in their ranks retired carpenters, engineers, plumbers, accountants and lawyers.

"If any elderly person has a favourite chair, for example, we'll fix it for them," he said.

Shearman said it was important to stay active in retirement and the Menzshed gave its members plenty of challenges and a chance to keep busy.

"It's as much about mental health and comradeship too," he said.

"For some of the members too, for example they might have just got out of hospital. It gives them a reason to get out of bed."

"They love it."

Shearman was quick to point out they are there to help, but drew the line if it was to take work away from local tradesmen.

"Only where there is genuine need," he said.


The Levin Menzshed had been going for 11 years now. A Menzshed had also sprouted up in Foxton.

Shearman said the Open Day would go ahead once the coronavirus had disappeared.

"It's postponed anyway, until life returns to normal," he said.

Levin Menzshed was always looking for new members if anyone wanted to join up, he said.