Man's effort to reach out to people in distress at South Shields' cliffs with special messages left on stones

‘Whatever your facing, please never think you’re alone’ – that’s the message from a South Shields man who hopes to reach out to those in distress on the cliff tops.

By Sophie Brownson
Tuesday, 4th May 2021, 6:00 am

Philip Mclachlan, 30, has come up with the unique idea of writing messages on rocks placed along the cliff tops in South Shields urging people to call the Samaritans if they need help.

The retail assistant from South Shields has painted the rocks in the Samaritans colours and left messages including ‘you are not alone’ and ‘do not suffer in silence,’ along with a phone number for the organisation.

Philip Mclachlan has left messages along the cliff tops in South Shields urging people in distress to seek help.

"There is a different message on each rock – some say ‘you are not alone call 116 123’ other say ‘call 116 123 do not suffer in silence.’

"Hopefully these rocks I am putting along the coastline in South Shields could potentially save someone's life."

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He added: “Whatever your facing, please never think you’re alone.

Philip Mclachlan has written messages onto rocks which he has placed along the cliff tops in South Shields in an effort to reach out to those who need help.

"There's a 24/7 service which is open all day and night. You can call the Samaritans on 116 123 who will talk to you and give you the support you need.”

Suzanne Armitage, branch director at Sunderland and South Tyneside Samaritans, said: “We are still here for everyone throughout the pandemic.

"We are still open 24/7 and still here to support anyone who needs us.

"We appreciate the help that we get from other people, like Philip, who publicise our organisation.”

One of the messages left on the cliff tops in South Shields by Philip Mclachlan.

Mrs Armitage said at the time that around 20% of the calls her organisation received since March 2020 had been directly linked to the pandemic, and ‘all callers have been affected by it in some way’.

The Samaritans were expecting to give more focus on young people over the coming months, saying they had been hit particularly hard by the past year of rolling lockdowns and other Covid-19 restrictions.

You don’t have to be suicidal to call Samaritans. Whatever you’re going through, call them free anytime from any phone on 116 123 (this number is FREE to call and will not appear on your phone bill), email [email protected], or visit to find details of your nearest branch.

Philip Mclachlan hopes his messages will encourage those in need to seek help.

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