FRIENDS OF VALE PARK:
Vale Park continues to be a real ‘hidden treasure’ here in New Brighton; there’s not a day that goes by that doesn’t see members of our local community enjoying one of town’s best resources.
One of the most valued aspects of the work of the ‘Friends’ is arranging an exciting and varied programme of music and arts events throughout the year. Summer Sunday evenings are enhanced by the sound of traditional brass bands, Summer Saturdays offer a wide range of musical events from local musicians, bands and fundraising projects. ‘Joytime’ continues to be the highlight of the school holidays for many of our local families and the Halloween disco this year was one of the best attended in the Park’s history.
Though there have been many events this season, some stand out as being cause for further mention:
We were thrilled to have the Council restore our Bandstand to its former glory. Particular thanks to Jeff Sherlock and his team at the Council for their hard work.
So many visitors from across the UK and beyond took time to comment on the beautiful flowers and immaculately maintained shrubs and borders. It goes without saying that Cliff, Robbie and Darran, the Parks Area Manager, deserve special mention and grateful thanks for their hard work.
Though many of our parks now fly the ‘Green Flag’, Vale Park was the first and earlier this year, the flag was once again proudly raised. A Blue Plaque was also unveiled in honour of Dr Poggi whose New Brighton College was on the site of the Shelter House at the bottom of Magazine Lane; Garribaldi’s two sons attended the College. This fabulous event closed with a concert by the ‘massed’ brass bands.
Raising the profile of the “Friends of Vale Park has seen the committee embracing the Council’s desire to form partnerships with local organisations. The ‘Friends’ has been developing a presence on ‘social media’; our Facebook group, VALE PARK – NEW BRIGHTON has nearly 800 members and is one of the UK’s largest ‘Friends Groups’. The core committee is expanding to include representations from ecology and wildlife groups, other community organisations, Vale House, Parks & Gardens, schools etc. We’re aiming to roll out the new committee structure earlier in the New Year and involve as many members of the local community as want to join in. Our first community event, a ‘Leaf Sweep’, saw many locals bring brushes, shovels and fill over 70 large bags with leaves and park debris.
It’s been a fantastic year for the Park with more people than ever visiting and taking part in events. Even though winter is upon us, there are still events taking place. Vale House are hosting a craft fair on the 29th November, and the ‘Friends of Vale Park’ annual Christmas event takes place in the Bandstand with the Salvation Army Brass Band. We hope to see you there on the 14th December at 2.30pm.
Whilst you may not be able to enjoy the Park during the winter season, things are as busy as ever on Facebook; hope to see you online.
On behalf of the Friends of Vale Park, may I wish you a peaceful Christmas and every happiness in 2015.
Andrew G Peckham – Friends of Vale Park Committee.