WINCHESTER Samaritans volunteers will be on hand at the city railway station in an attempt to beat 'post-Christmas blues.'

The third Monday of January, this year January 21, is often referred to as Blue Monday, a term first coined by Sky Travel, but volunteers from the charity want to rename the date.

Members from the Winchester branch will be at the station from 10am to 3pm to talk to commuters and hand out free tea bags, as part of a campaign to brand the day 'Brew Monday.'

Ian Stevens, Network Rail’s Suicide Prevention program manager, said: “Brew Monday is a great opportunity for the rail industry to show its support for Samaritans and the great work they do in helping people up and down the country.

"Millions of people use the rail network every day and if through this campaign we can encourage them to talk about their problems over a cup of tea, we will have made a significant contribution to their lives and to the lives of those around them."

Winchester Samaritans currently has over 100 volunteers and is located at 13 Upper High Street.

Samaritans Winchester Branch director, Anne-Marie Drummond, said: "Isolation and loneliness are one of the main reasons that people contact Samaritans, so making the effort to talk to a friend or family member who might be finding things difficult at this time of year can make a huge difference to them."

Anyone feeling troubled can contact the Samaritans on 116 123, free of charge.