Stop and talk at the ’happy to chat’ bench to help reduce loneliness and isolation in the community.

The Bridport Millennium Green Trust has ‘adopted’ a bench at Mountfield and attached a sign which says, ‘happy to chat bench, sit here if you don’t mind someone stopping to say hello’.

The initiative is spreading throughout the country with hopes it will encourage people to talk to each other.

Trustees of the Millennium Green felt simply stopping to say hello to someone at the bench could make a real difference in the community and make life a little better.

They say that public benches can improve people’s mental health and social wellbeing as they serve as a resting place for those with limited mobility and also combat loneliness and isolation.

Paul Bennett, secretary of the Bridport Millennium Green Trust, said: “This measure follows on from the Millennium Green Trust’s new signage, leaflets and website to improve for all ages awareness of the wonderful facilities of the Millennium Green.”