Eric says: “I need to get back in the swing of things for work”

“I’m coming out to LandWorks on the understanding from the prison staff who have said it will be very beneficial for me. I class myself as a hard worker, but I wanted to explore a bit more about LandWorks and I’ve heard of opportunities of work on release, contacts that you lot have, the work you do here, like woodwork and things like that. I’ve always wanted to put my hand to woodwork, but never had the time to do things like that…

I made a big mistake. That’s why I went to prison and I realise I made a big mistake. So, I need to get back into the swing of things for work. I’ve put on four stone over the 20 months that I’ve been in prison and I need to lose a bit more weight. I’m not getting enough exercise in prison and fed not very good food. LandWorks is a gateway to get myself back into the working way of life again. That’s why I’m here…

I had a trade before and was working for agencies before I committed the crime that put me in prison. I didn’t have no work, that’s why I committed the crime. Agency work is fine. It’s work at the end of the day. It’s work and it’s there when a company needs you. The downfall of agency work is it’s not a stable job. It’s not like working for one company and that company takes you on and you’re there for life. It’s sort of “we don’t need you this week” and they’ll get rid of you. Then you’ve got to phone up the agency “I’m no longer needed there, the contract’s finished, is there anything?” – “no, not at the moment, we haven’t got anything, we’ll give you a ring when something comes in”. Then you’re sat on your arse until something else comes in. I did that for four years…

I’ve been in trouble most of my life, on and off, always picking the wrong things to do, a bit of a ‘Dennis the Menace’. I’m at that age now where I’ve had enough of it. It’s eventually hit the spot that I’m doing the wrong things in life and it’s took all this time for me to realise that. I’m surprised saying that because I never thought I’d say that. It’s come to the time now where I’m thinking “how do I go about doing the right things?” because I’ve done the wrong things all my life and that’s all I’m used to, so, how do I go about doing the right things?

Most of it is down to decision-making I feel. So, making the right decisions will be the key element to that. Keeping busy is another key element for me. Boredom is a relapse as far as I’m concerned. Boredom is definitely a relapse. Decision-making, that’s another relapse. Bumping into the wrong people and being led astray, that’s another relapse. It’s all little things and triggers out there that you can mess up on. It’s realising them hiccups along the way. Like I said, I think I’ve learnt by every mistake that can be thrown at you. No more can come my way I think…

I like my hard work and I think that’s the only thing that’s getting me through. I want to be straight now. I want to do the right things in life. I want a job. I want to work and earn my living. Most of my past has always come back and bit me on the bum. This certainly did, this time. It’s making the right decisions now. When I said I’d move, I’m even thinking of moving to make a new start, out of the area, out of the faces I know, the people I meet. Decision-making I’ve practically cracked now, so, it’s keeping to the right decision-making and hard work. That’s my goal now. I’ve never set many goals in my life, but that is top priority goal now. I think I’d be a very, very, very valuable worker for some company….

I thought of making bird-tables because I like looking at bird-tables in people’s gardens. I love them. I’ve always thought of a slate roof one, but never put it into practice to make one. All the photographs on there of bird-tables, that’s all come from my own head. All my design. I saw some slates down there and I was walking up and it just came into my mind, a slate bird-table…

This place is helping me. It’s really good. Since I’ve been here I’ve met some very, very nice people, very friendly people. They’re understanding, caring, not judgemental and to be honest, I’m not used to being around people of that nature…”

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