LIGHTS on the Greenbridge Roundabout will turn Samaritans green today to mark World Suicide Prevention Day.

Last year, there were 35 suicides in Wiltshire and 116 between 2015 and 2017.

Darren Tee, a Samaritans volunteer and director of the Swindon branch, said: “Statistics are always difficult to look at when it comes to suicide, but more difficult are the personal stories and tragedies behind the statistics.

“At Samaritans we aim to reduce the number of people who die by suicide by being there for those who need us the most.

“If we are able to listen to someone at that moment of crisis – in a safe space, without judgement and without giving advice – it can often be a catalyst for them to try something different, to see another option or take more time to think.”

The Samaritans has been working with Swindon Borough Council to leave posters advertising the service in places where people might consider taking their life.

It follows comments from Nicholas Rheinberg, assistant coroner for Swindon and Wiltshire, following the death of Karen Williams. The 60-year-old was found on Gordon Gardens, off Islington Street, last December after jumping from Fleming Way car park.

Mr Rheinberg wrote to the car park’s owners, Swindon Borough Council, encouraging them to place more anti-suicide advice in multi-storeys around the town. He said: “Anything that can be done to prevent future tragedies should be pursued."

The council is supporting World Suicide Prevention Day by turning the new lights on the Greenbridge Roundabout green this evening.

Coun Brian Ford, cabinet member for adults’ health and the borough’s mental health champion, said: “Suicide Prevention Day reminds us to all take some time out and ask other people how they are feeling. This can take just a few minutes, but can make a huge difference to someone’s day.

“During our year of mental health we are trying to reduce stigma and encourage people to open up more about their mental wellbeing. We gladly support the Samaritans with this initiative that reminds us all of the importance of open and honest conversations.”

For more information please contact Swindon and District Samaritans branch by emailing or calling 01793 53 73 73.