TWO free drop-in hubs will launch at railway stations this week following World Mental Health Day today.

The support hubs, at stations in Brighton and Eastbourne, are part of a pilot scheme between Southern Rail and Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust to help anyone suffering with their mental health amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Psychologists and therapists will be on hand to talk to people at the hubs on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 3pm until 6pm.

Southern Rail Wellbeing Champions will also be available at each station for general advice and support.

Sam Allen, chief executive of Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Covid-19 has threatened our personal safety, disrupted our daily routines, uprooted our lives and shaken our world.

“The psychological impact on our local communities has been huge. It’s so important we talk about our mental health with friends, family members or colleagues as this can be key in looking after our mental wellbeing.

“We’re delighted to be working with Southern on developing this unique mental health hub pilot scheme.

“It’s fantastic to see the organisation taking such an active role in supporting colleagues, customers and the local communities.”

The pilot scheme follows an “affirmation art” campaign by Govia Thameslink Railway, with colourful messages of hope appearing at stations on World Suicide Prevention Day.

Angie Doll, managing director for Southern and Gatwick Express, said: “The railway is playing a vital role in keeping the country moving throughout this terrible pandemic.

“Our colleagues have been working tirelessly so our passengers can use our trains with the confidence they are Covid-19 safe and secure.

“We know this will be taking its toll on both their physical and mental health, so we have wellbeing champions across our network to support the wellbeing of all our staff. In honour of World Mental Health Day, we are now extending this support to passengers, thanks to our new and first-time partnership with an NHS Trust.”

MP for Eastbourne Caroline Ansell said: “Mental health issues affect many, many people and some of those people are sometimes reluctant to seek help. Having a pop-up hub like this at Eastbourne Station is really sending out a powerful message that it’s OK to talk about mental health and there is help and support available.”

The NHS trust’s #Ten4Ten campaign encourages people to look after their mental health by following ten steps including maintaining a healthy lifestyle and staying connected to others by phone and email.”