Every summer, Stapleford Recreation Ground hosts the Village Weekend, incorporating the Village Show. A quintessentially British affair, bringing the whole community together, showing off their best fruit, veg, flowers and crafts. The recreation ground is filled with stalls, with locals selling their wares, promoting events, social groups and charities. A great opportunity for us campaigning for The Tree, to speak to the locals and gauge their interest in our mission.
So on Saturday 25th June, we set up our stall bedecked with bunting and our new branding, with a rather large painting of a bare oak tree. The idea, to ask the visitors to suggest ways in which they would use the Tree if and when we manage to halt its plans for demolition. By the end of two lovely hours in the sunshine, chatting and brainstorming, the community at large covered the branches with green sticky notes (leaves), brimming with lovely ideas.
Some were folk who had lived in the area for years, and told fond stories of happy family times spent at The Tree, some were new families with plenty of ideas as to how they would use it as a community hub. With the business plan in place, knowing the building has the potential to be used from around 9.30am til 11pm, there were ideas aplenty for use by all members of our community.
Here are just some of them:
Cricket Team meetings
Book club/book swap
Pop up food kitchens
Parent and toddler mornings
Meals on Wheels
Board Games nights
Open mic nights
Arts film screenings
Self defence classes
And this was just a few! We were thrilled by the enthusiasm of the majority of people we spoke to. So the next step is to persuade the local council that a compulsory purchase order would be the next step, so we can realise these great ideas. After all, it appears to be what the locals desire.
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