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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Walsh

Car enthusiasts gather for Mens mental health

Updated: May 7, 2023

It's Saturday 11th June 2022. It's sunny, warm and the sound of engines and exhausts is deafening. This is pre-arrange and police monitored meet of car enthusiasts organised by Carnage Gatherings. CG arrange meets periodically so car fans from all walks of life can come together in a safe environment. This event in particular had facilitators from Andys Man Club in attendance.

Mark and Jonathan attended with collection buckets, air fresheners and wristbands to distribute in exchange for donations. Jonathan Brickell is a huge car enthusiast himself, with 4 cars in his collection being a 1994 Jaguar XJ40, a 1997 Jaguar X300, a 2000 Jaguar XJ8 and a 2002 Mini Cooper. Attending these meets and raising awareness for mens mental health and Andys Man club is extremely important to him.

The event had 100s of cars attending. The location was the Homebase/Halfords car park in Marsh Mills. By 8pm this was at full capacity so cars were being directed to overflow car parks nearby.

Carnage Gatherings is a group led by Kevin Tabrah and is a community of motor fans across the South West. As I am sure you know, the car scene has had a bad reputation in the past, mostly due to a small few ruining it for others. So-called 'boy racers' and such like. Kevin has marketed Carnage Gatherings as a safe and family-friendly place for all car enthusiasts to meet. Devon & Cornwall police, including TikTok sensation, Sgt Owen Messenger, are regular attenders, sometimes even arriving in their Lotus Evora. They are welcomed by the organiser and attendees and can be seen interacting with adults and children alike, even handing out freebies. This keeps these events safe and well-managed which is what Kevin strives for.

A selection of vehicles that attended.

Kevin himself has had his own battles with poor mental health and knows how prevalent it is in men. The South West car scene has sadly lost a few guys to suicide this year alone. Andys Man Club Plymouth has a mission to create more awareness among those in this community. The motor world is predominantly men, so it's the perfect place to spread that love and information.

Omnium had the pleasure of attending this event as guests and I think it was quite the eye opener to those who have never attended a car event before. The community is a close one, good friends made, laughs had and support given. I myself am part of it and had met some amazing people that I am now proud to call friends. We have had days out weekends away, we have laughed and cried together.

Trace and Calum from Omnium News Desk with Jonathan from Andys Man Club.

This event raised £145.88 for Andys Man Club. The most important thing was the awareness, chatting to people, explaining what AMC is all about. Even if it helped just one guy, it's worth it.

Thank you to Trace and Calum for attending and capturing the event on camera, for Mark and Jonathan from AMC and to Kevin for the event itself. It's not an easy thing to organise.

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Michelle Walsh

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