Shoes are a symbol in a suicide prevention event

The community of Telford and Wrekin gathered in Southwater Square to show their support for World Suicide Prevention Day.

Councillor Andy Burford
Councillor Andy Burford

As part of the event, 94 pairs of shoes were placed around Southwater Square to highlight the shocking fact 94 men take their own lives each week in the UK.

Local campaigners who have experienced a loved one taking their own life organised the event with support from Telford & Wrekin Council.

The local campaigners have developed the concept and named it Project 94, "Can You Hear Me."

Stands were open in Southwater during the day for people to learn more about the support available locally and nationally, and they offered advice on how to talk to people experiencing suicidal thoughts.

Cabinet members for Telford & Wrekin Council also raised money through a sponsored bike ride for the Cameron Grant Memorial Trust, at the event.

Those involved said they wanted to end the stigma around suicide and encourage people to talk and to listen.

According to Samaritans, men are three times more likely to take their own lives than women in the UK.

Councillor Andy Burford, Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, said: "All of us can do something to prevent suicide - a short conversation is sometimes all it takes to save a person's life.

"The majority of people who take their own lives aren't known to mental health services - that's why it's important to ask people how they are.

Councillor Kelly Middleton, Chair of the Health and Wellbeing Board, said: "Every life lost to suicide is a tragedy, one that can be prevented by listening and talking to someone.

"Reach out to someone today, give them a call and ask them how they are.If you're struggling with suicidal thoughts, then pick up the phone - there is always someone there to help."

*If you have been affected by this article, you can call the Samaritans on 116123 or visit

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