We have worked with a plethora of talented and creative people over the Summer holidays to deliver a program of family friendly digital activities and I must begin by saying thank you to everyone who gave so generously of their time and expertise over this unprecedented period with a very special thanks to those who helped us deliver our inaugural South Cliff Gardens Digital Family Book Festival, it wouldn’t have been possible without your generosity. The festival was a lot of fun to create and we hope those who took the time to participate in any way found it an enjoyable experience.
We have also been very proud to be part of this year’s Heritage Open Days, a national scheme which encourages heritage sites to open up areas of history and culture not usually accessible to the public. Of course this year it’s all been a bit different, with social distancing in place and ongoing uncertainty about the possibility of localised lock downs, in response for the first time since it began in 1994 the festival went at least in some part digital.
The theme for 2020 was hidden nature and we were thrilled to be able to collaborate with local artists Angela and David Chalmers who created an enchanting short film exploring some secret features of the gardens and celebrating their nature and heritage it really is a work of beauty.
Our Project Officer Victoria has also been busy talking heritage gardening with a number of guest contributors for our very own South Cliff Gardens – Heritage Gardens Question Time where we got to hear tips from heritage gardening experts on subjects as diverse as growing a vineyard in northern Britain to creating a time capsule.
Thank you to those fantastic individuals who contributed and to everyone who took the time to watch any of our films. If you missed them they are still available to view on our YouTube channel.
In October we will be taking part in another national scheme called Fun Palaces, the idea is to link communities through skills and knowledge sharing with the aim of breaking down barriers to connection and tackling social isolation. In previous years these have taken place in public spaces such as libraries, community centres, schools and streets up and down the country. This year they are going digital and inviting us to make Tiny Fun Palaces.
We would like to invite you to help us to with South Cliff Gardens own Fun Palace by creating a Tiny Revolution. If you have a skill or hobby you can share with us in the form of a short video, blog or activity sheet we would love to share it on our social media. We welcome submissions on any topic. It could be a quick tip for a crafting shortcut, a tutorial on playing an instrument, sharing a gardening skill, a special recipe, a mindfulness technique or a children’s activity.
Take a look at the Fun Palaces website for inspiration!
Finally we are looking for volunteer walking tour guides. These volunteers will lead tours of the gardens with the aim of sharing their heritage and exploring their natural habitat. We are also looking for volunteers to lead welfare walks to help support the mental and physical health of participants as well as encouraging social interaction. No experience is necessary and full training and support (in line with government rules on Corona Virus safety rules) will be available.
If you have a Fun Palace: Tiny Revolution you would like to share or to find out more about volunteering please contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Gemma Alexander – Community Engagement Officer