‘There is no health without mental health’: scaffolding safety nets installed in tribute to World Mental Health Day

  • Two textile art displays have been installed in Salford and Manchester
  • Campaign highlights mental health issues among construction workers
  • Installations coincide with World Mental Health Day

Two art installations highlighting the high suicide rates in the construction industry have been erected ahead of World Mental Health Day today.

Lynn Setterington, an internationally recognised textile artist, designed and crafted the displays which include colourful safety nets attached to scaffolding and a banner reading ‘There is no health without mental health’.

One is situated in Manchester and the other in Salford.

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Slogan banner being stitched together ahead of installation

The campaign draws attention to the mental health crisis within the construction industry, with more than 1,400 construction workers committing suicide between 2011 and 2017 according to the Office for National Statistics, more than three times the national average for men.

Dr Setterington, a senior lecturer at Manchester Metropolitan University’s School of Art, said: “I hope it’s a message that everybody can take on board and just think a little bit about.

“Although it’s about the construction industry, the quote ‘there is no health without mental health’, I just think it’s so pertinent to today.”

scaffolding safety nets mental health
Dr Lynn Setterington stands in front of her Salford installment with the scaffolders that erected it

The installations are in place on Chapel Street, Salford, and on Oldham Road in Ancoats, Manchester, and were assembled by two local scaffolding firms.

Lenny Tunnicliffe, of Tunny Scaffolding which installed the Salford scaffolding artwork, has seen the impact of poor mental health within his own firm, with two former employees taking their own lives.

“We’ve had lads that have worked for us that have gone off with mental health, for whatever reason, and it’s sad,” he said.

“I just thought, right, okay, if we can help, we will.”

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Tunny scaffolders securing the banner to the safety nets

Manchester mental health charity, 42nd Street, also collaborated on the campaign, with Dr Setterington holding group workshops for young people throughout the year.

She said: “I think for them to see how it’s been realised is really good.”

scaffolding art display ancoats
The Ancoats installment on Oldham Road

The installations are expected to stay up for a month.

Anyone affected by mental health issues can speak to Samaritans on 116 123.