A GROUP aimed at challenging stigma surrounding men's mental health has been recognised at a national awards do.

S4C's Dathlu Dewrder (Celebrating Bravery) awards took place in early December but the episode showing the winners was shown on December 29.

The awards help to highlight some of the unsung heroes from around the country who support people in their communities day in, day out. 

Among the award-winners were Andy's Man Club, which launched at the Yellow and Blue Hub in Wrexham in 2022.

Since then, the free-to-attend group has already proven to be an important tool for several men in the Wrexham area.

Two of them, Spencer Smith and Dan Rowe, were on hand to accept the award from presenter Elin Fflur and Go Compare man Wynne Evans, who has himself opened up about his mental health struggles.

In the episode shown on S4C, Spencer opened up to Owain Tudur-Jones about just how important the club has been following a traumatic birth experience for him and his wife.

Asked about how Andy's Man Club has helped him change as a person, Spencer - a co-lead facilitator for the club in Wrexham - added: "I don't cry as much. In the first month, I cried at every meeting. That's eight hours of crying, on top of the crying I did at home.

"We're what they call geriatric parents, so my wife was in her 30's, I was in my 40's. She went in but she wasn't totally right when she came out and then it all went wrong.

"We've spoken about it later; Megan was looking at me thinking 'I'm going to die' and I was looking at her thinking 'she's going to die' and she lost more than two litres of blood."


Spencer added: "That's where this feeling of depression came from, thinking you're going to lose your wife and look after the baby on your own and you're panicking. I just didn't know what to do with myself."

He said that, as a result of that experience, he took five months off work and had planned to take his own life.

Spencer said: "One of the boys came in (to Andy's Man Club) and said 'I know what's happening, I know what you're going to do because I've been there too, but don't do it because it's so important that you don't do it'.

The Leader: PIC: Andy's Man Club's Spencer Smith on Dathlu Dewrder (Credit; S4C/BBC).

"He saved my life and he still comes to the club now and even though I still have bad days, I still know that he did something so important."

When Spencer and Dan went on stage to accept the award, the pair were shocked to receive a video message from Wrexham AFC owners, Rob McElhenney and Ryan Reynolds.

In it, Rob said: "Congratulations Andy's Man Club, you're doing great work and we just want to say congratulations to you."

Ryan added: "Huge, huge, huge love from both Rob and I to Andy's Man Club. Hopefully get to meet you soon."

Andy's Man Club as a whole was established in 2016 and is named after 23-year-old Andrew Roberts who sadly took his own life that year.

Nine men met in a small room in the Yorkshire town of Halifax with a simple aim of talking through their issues and helping each other deal with their mental health. 

Fast forward eight years and Andy's Man Club now has groups at over 150 locations across three countries of the UK.

Its Wrexham club was the first north Wales-based branch to open when it did so in 2022.