Over the past two and a half years a group of dedicated volunteers have converted 3 overgrown allotments above the former Holy Trinity Church on Hopping Hill into The Milford Community Greenspace, a place full of facilities for children to play and learn and for the wider community to use. For more details on the work that has been done, the facilities created and the school groups and others that use it, see our web page here.
Throughout the life of the project regular updates of our progress have been published and this is the latest. In our October report (here) we described our biggest project of 2022, the installation of a new 10ft x 8ft shed, bought with a £1000 grant from Derbyshire County Council. Since then, with the aid of an additional £300 grant from Belper Town Council, we have installed shelves in the shed and extended the eaves on one side – see pictures below.
Extended eaves being fitted to shed (roof felt added later)
This has allowed us to store a much greater range of materials (both on the shelves and under the shelter of the eaves) for the children, increasing the variety of activities on offer to them. We have also taken the opportunity the sort out the old existing shed (and it has to be said, clear out an accumulation of junk!) move materials for the children to the new shed, and convert to old shed into more of a tool shed full of equipment used for the upkeep of the Greenspace.
We are keen to host more events on the Greenspace for the whole community and not just school children and, over the period since the last report, we held a Bonfire Night in November (report here) and a Christmas Fuddle in December(report here) both of which were well received.
The two other major construction projects since October have been the creation of the “The Pallet Shelf” and The Pallet Wall”. The Pallet Shelf is a work bench at child height for use when the children are creating things on the “Tinker Zone”. It runs along the entire length of the Zone and was constructed with pallet sides and old doors on the top. The pictures below show it in construction and in its final state.
The bench is now regularly used by schoolchildren who are working in the Tinker Zone. Here are some pupils from Maple View School in Mackworth just last week for example.
Moving on the the Pallet Wall, the idea of this is to provide a divider between the story telling area/wild corner and the more formal parts of the Greenspace, which also doubles up as a place where the children can store “treasures” they find or create, write on blackboards etc.
The wall is in the process of construction and is now 3/4 complete, as can be seen below.
Throughout the period since October the Greenspace volunteers, as well has undertaking the work described above, have undertaken a multitude of smaller jobs, helping to maintain and enhance The Greenspace, often in inclement weather. They were helped by Duke of Edinburgh trainee Freddy, who has to do an hour of work on The Greenspace once a week for three months, and we are very grateful for his help. A selection of the smaller jobs are shown below.
Finally, for a brief period in December it became wet enough for the stream in the GreenSpace to reappear, and the children made the most of it!