James' Place open centre in Newcastle to prevent male suicides

  • Watch Chris Conway's report.

A centre to prevent male suicides has opened in Newcastle.

Charity James' Place, on Summerhill Street, offers free therapy and specialist help to suicidal men in the region.

Suicide is the single leading cause of death for men under 50 and the North East has the highest rate of suicide in England.

James' Place, which also has centres in London and Liverpool, was founded by Clare Milford Haven and Nick Wentworth-Stanley following the death of their son James, a former Newcastle University student, who took his own life aged 21 in 2006.

Marcus Davies has sought support from the charity in the past.

He told ITV Tyne Tees: "Lots of things built up and I found myself just being indifferent to being alive. I felt like nobody could help me.

"I don't doubt if I hadn't had my intervention with James' Place, I'd be dead.

"If you're thinking that suicide is the only way out for you, because it is that bad, I would urge any men who feel that way to come here and access what they've got because it quite literally saved my life."

Inside the centre where men can access support. Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

Men can self-refer or be referred to the centre, which has no waiting lists and will typically see people within two working days, by family, friends and medical professionals to receive quick access to therapy.

CEO Ellen O'Donoghue said: "We've really tried to create a place that makes it as easy as possible for men to open up.

"We know that we're asking people to do something really difficult, to talk to a therapist, about their fears, about their feelings, the levels of distress they're experiencing so we want to make that as easy as possible, so everything that we do is designed to get to the heart of the problem really quickly".

The charity, which has treated 1,800 men to date, hope to open two further centres in England by 2026 so half of the male population will be within two hours of a James' Place.

The centre is open Monday-Friday 09.30-5.30pm by appointment only.

If you are struggling to cope, call Samaritans for free on 116 123 (UK and ROI) or contact other sources of support, such as:

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