Mental Health Mates is set to host a monthly walk at Douglas Promenade to encourage wellbeing.

Founded by journalist and author Bryony Gordon in 2016, Mental Health Mates exists to provide peer support to people experiencing mental health challenges throughout the UK.

The walks will take place on the first Saturday of every month, and will be led by volunteer Julie Bennett.

Talking about the walks, Julie said: ‘We meet at the Bee Gees statute on Douglas Promenade. It'll be a gentle stroll, with the opportunity for people to walk and talk to others if they choose to.

‘People can bring family friends, and there will be people who are in a good place as well as those who are in not such a good place. There will be no fear or judgement, and it’s completely peer group support.

‘People who are struggling with their mental health can find motivation quite difficult, so I actually think it will be a very brave for people to come for the first time. I want people to feel included and to feel safe.’

The walks begin at 11am and last for roughly one hour, before participants will make their way back to the Bee Gees statue and enjoy a trip to Costa Coffee at the Sea Terminal if they wish to do so.

Talking about her own experiences of mental health issues, Julie said: ‘I've had past traumas and mental health challenges that have been helped by talk therapy, alongside medications and many years ago with hospitalisation. But fortunately, at the moment, I have been in a good place for a few years.

‘I'm aware that it's a very difficult time for people to access mental health resources, so I feel I want to try and give something back and support people.’