In October 2010 we circulated a questionnaire to find out whether people would be interested in a number of new ideas for projects in the village. Please see the ‘Consultation and Evaluation’ section.
The responses were very positive, so we submitted bids for funding to create a Village Trail, design and place some Gateway Features on entry to the village, install cycle parking and support wildlife by making and erecting nest boxes and bat boxes. We were eventually successful in our bid for funding from the RDPE Leader programme, to whom we express our thanks. We were also lucky to benefit from some funding from the Borough Council and from a small grant funding trust, called the Jo Barnes Fund.
The whole project set out to encourage lots of community involvement and so we held a ‘Community Consultation Event’ to launch the initiative in November, 2011. There were lots of displays and a series of interesting talks about the project. People joined in discussions, brought ideas and shared stories and photos from the past. We also worked with lots of the groups in the village, including the Brownies and the WI and we talked to lots of people about their memories of the village and also their aspirations.
Lots of people have been involved in one way or another!! From sharing stories, to helping with refreshments at events, from bringing us photos, to giving us unusual facts, from artwork and super paintings, to taking photographs, from helping make bird boxes and bat boxes, to helping with the website and the financial management, to checking work for accuracy to simply being very patient! Many thanks to all those involved. But a very special thanks to Cheryl who has coordinated so much of the project and to Sheena our Treasurer who has been crucial in managing the complex grant funding work.
We are thrilled at last to have:
- Designed and installed cycle parking at four sites around the village and held a‘Led Cycle Ride’ (March 11th) to launch the new facilities.
- Held two Bat Box/Bird Box Making events (January and February), with over 100 people joining in, making around 300 boxes, some to take home, and some to erect in and around the village. Many of these are already in use! Placed Gateway Signs at the approaches to the village, with design and artwork from community members.
- Created a Village Trail with ten themed Interpretation Panels, all with a sustainability message threaded into them. They have recently been installed and we hope they will be enjoyed by locals and visitors alike!
What an Interesting Community!! Throughout this project we have uncovered some really interesting pieces of history and discovered some fascinating stories of life in the village. Some of this information has been used on the Interpretation Panels along the Village Trail, the rest will be available on the village webpages.
The Village Trail consists of ten interpretation panels and follows the same route that was mapped out in the original ‘Millennium Brochure’ published by Derrington History Project Group in the year 2000 to celebrate the millennium.
Each of the ten panels has a different theme and has been put together with the input of many different people. Artwork, photos, memories, stories and anecdotes have all been incorporated. The wooden panels themselves have ten different sandblasted (raised) icons that represent the village and village life. We hope that you like these, our aim was for children to be able to do ‘wood rubbings’ (like brass rubbings!) and for people with sight problems to be able to touch the shapes and enjoy the feel of the wood. The backdrop to each panel consists of different photographs from the Millennium Green. Illustrations from the WI tapestry that hangs in the Village Hall have been
incorporated into the design of the map too.
We do hope you enjoy the trail, reading the panels and feel proud of our village with its fascinating history, amazing talent, unique personalities, its lovely countryside and environment – we have lots to celebrate and protect!