Farm lifts lid on depression after father takes his own life
PUBLISHED: 10:13 05 June 2019
A farm in Norfolk is "lifting the lid" on mental health issues in the farming community after a friend and father of two took his own life last year.
Manor Farm in Fundenhall, near Wymondham, will open its gates to the public on Sunday June 9 for an annual event in aid of mental health charity Mind, following the death of 34-year-old father Simon Taylor from Attleborough.
Farmer and organiser Carrie Burridge said the idea behind the event was to lift the lid on mental health and break down stigma about depression and anxiety.
The 31-year-old said many in the farming community struggled with mental health and the industry was facing a communication crisis.
She said: "Mental health problems are rife among farmers because of the long hours and tendency to work alone. There is a lot of stress and pressure to meet high standards and financial difficulties add to it. I've had depression for 12 years and completely sympathise with anyone struggling. There's nothing worse than a battle with your own mind and feeling like the world would be better off without you in it."
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Before his death, self employed roofing contractor Simon Taylor was a spokesman for Mind and spoke openly about the pressure of running his own business.
His two daughters, Poppy and Caitlin, both under 10, will be at the open farm event on Sunday, raising money for Mind charity with their own stall.
As well as live music, archery, stage zumba and various family activities, a professional counsellor Kerry Cordell will be at the event, offering advice for those concerned about their own mental health or that of someone they know.
There will also be representatives from NHS mental health service Norfolk and Suffolk Foundation Trust available to answer questions.
Mrs Burridge said: "There is likely to be men at the open farm event with their families, who don't even know they have depression because they don't recognise what those feelings are. I hope they can pick up information on their visit and realise things aren't quite right and talk to someone that can help."
To find out more about the event visit the Facebook event page.