The original members of 'Cecil's Place
The St Clair Men's Shed, 'Cecil's Place', commenced on 13 February 2013 at the Autumnleaf Neighbourhood Centre in Autumnleaf Parade St Clair with 8 inaugural members. Established as a social group for retired men in the local area, the group held informal meetings and hosted a number guest speakers, mainly about men's health and other men's issues.
In December 2013 it was decided that a functioning men's shed would help to increase membership, so a concrete slab was laid and a garden shed erected at the Autumnleaf Parade Neighbourhood Centre. This allowed acceptance of tool donations which gave members an opportunity to work on some projects to benefit the local community. Unfortunately, the garden shed had limitations of storage space, accessibility and opportunities for bigger and more meaningful projects. It was time to find us a 'real' men's shed to work from.
In August 2014 a request was made to Penrith City Council to erect a bigger shed on the Council owned land at the Autumnleaf Neighbourhood Centre. In April 2015 a letter was received from the council rejecting our proposal. Private avenues for a shed was now our only option.
On 25 July 2016, the group was renamed the St Clair and District Men's Shed (SCADMS), a Constitution was written and a committee formed. We were officially incorporated with NSW Fair Trading on 29 July 2016. Soon after, we registered with the Australian Men's Shed Association (AMSA).
In August 2016, we held discussions with CatholicCare, part of the Catholic Diocese in Parramatta about the possible use of some land on the Mamre House site to build a shed. In October 2016, CatholicCare advised us that we could move into a temporary building on their site, until we get approval to establish the permanent larger shed.
After fundraising efforts and kind donations from the Nepean Men's Shed, Strathfield South High School and the local community, the group was able to equip their temporary shed with a range of hand and electrical tools.
In July 2017 our local State MP, the Hon. Tanya Davies, accepted our offer to become our shed patron.
In February 2018 we were notified that we had received a grant from the NSW Government Community Building Partnership Grants program to help start to build our new shed on the Mamre House site.
Throughout 2018 we have been allocated BBQs at Bunnings Minchinbury, on the first Friday of each month. We hope that this allocation will continue into next year as well.
In December 2018 we were notified that we had received another grant from the NSW Government Community Building Partnership Grants program to help build our new shed.
In December 2018 we submitted a Development Application to the Penrith City Council (PCC) to build our new shed on the Mamre House site. We hope to have PCC approval in the near future, so that we can have Stage 1 of our new shed completed in the first half of 2019.
Over the years, 'Cecil's Place' and the St Clair and District Men's Shed has assisted the local community by:
Building a stage for the Harold Wheen Pre-school.
Made building block for Penrith NADO.
Renovation of two bench seats for Ripples Swimming Centre.
Building 'Buddy Benches' for Emmaus Catholic College at Kemps Creek.
Made toys for Domestic Violence Service Management.
Made a Nativity Scene for CatholicCare Mamre House site.
Built a "bus" for It's a Small World Childcare Centre at Seven Hills.
Built Myna bird traps for the Blacktown City Council.
Built 3D reindeers for our shed patron and local State Member, the Hon. Tanya Davies' home.