A town resident has put forward the idea of introducing a ‘chatty bench’ in Market Rasen as a way of tackling loneliness .
At thelatest town council meeting, Mayor John Matthews said: “Peter Harold has written in to the office and suggested that we have an area dedicated as a chatty bench where people who are a bit lonely or don’t know too many people can sit and have a chat.”
Coun Cathy Sirret added: “I was wondering if part of the green space/pocket park at Tesco could be a good location for something like that, bearing in mind a lot of people will go there.”
In response, Coun Matthews replied: “I think the concept is the chatty bench would be slightly more central. Our benches on the Market Place would be quite an appropriate place.”
Peter was present at the meeting and explained: “Well it started down in Kent I think, and you have probably seen it sweeping the country.
“They are doing one in Lincoln outside the station and I think that is a good idea.
“I’ve got a signwriter friend and I’m prepared to get the signs done at no cost to the council.
“It started off because a guy sat on a bench for an hour and a half and nobody came and talked to him.
“He went home and printed off a note and put it on the bench.
“The next time he came, people went and talked.
“I think people can be a bit shy sometimes and if there is an invitation there to actually talk to people, it seems to work.”
Coun Matthews asked Mr Harold to send over a mock up of what the sign would look like, but the town council approved of the idea.