THERE was plenty of talking and laughter as a group of 11 men joined a walk on International Men's Day on Saturday (November 19).

The five-mile #walkwithme initiative set out from the Allerford Inn, near Norton Fitzwarren, and returned there for a lunch.

It was the brainchild of Chris Manley, who has found walking has helped improve his mental health after suffering from depression for a year.

He said: "It was amazing. As the walk progressed, we bonded, laughed and talked about so many things including our mental health.

"I would recommend any group of friends, family or organisations to encourage walking, in particular as pairs or groups as it can be a truly life-changing way of having a conversation.

"We all have events in our life that can be overwhelming and if we are there to listen, a problem shared is a problem halved.

"We finished it off with a tasty pub lunch and all agreed that we should do it again."

Chris is urging people to get out for one walk every day on their own or with friends to help boost their mental and physical health.

He wants people to post videos or photos and details of their experience on social media with the #walkwithme hashtag on social media to encourage others to join in.

He is also appealing for businesses and institutions to become involved and to contact him at