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Clare Castle Country Park receives a welcome funding boost from the Government




Trustees at Clare Castle Country Park have been awarded a grant of £47,652 to create a new education, training and volunteer centre.

The grant has come from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).

Geoffrey Bray, chair of Park Trustees, said: "The grant has been awarded so that park volunteers, school students and other workers have access to a purpose-built building.

Natalie Tarling is the Volunteer and Community Engagement Manager for Clare Castle Country Park. Picture by Mark Westley.
Natalie Tarling is the Volunteer and Community Engagement Manager for Clare Castle Country Park. Picture by Mark Westley.

"Here they will be able to carry out essential tasks for the maintenance of the park and for education.

"Whilst it will provide a practical and safe all-weather space for maintenance and education, it also means that we can provide more opportunities for more people throughout the year."

The new steel workshop building will enable the development of a Forest School in the park.

"A new Forest School for 3-5-year-olds will run on a three days per week basis later this year," said Natalie Tarling, the park's Volunteer and Community Engagement Manager.

‘‘The Little Woodland Tribe’ will use the new Education, Training and Volunteer Centre to provide all-weather opportunities for early years learning despite the weather or time of year."

Older children taking part in bush craft activities in the school holidays will also be able to use the space.

Usage of the park by several local schools has increased in the past four years. Its history and habitats are a rich source for teaching and learning across schools’ curricula as well as for adult learning.

The park also provides opportunities for a wide-range of practical educational purposes from using tools, outdoor cooking and using a wide range of different materials such as willow.

The trustees will use the grant to provide a safe and robust building for these purposes where muddy boots and wet coats will be positively welcomed.

The project is planned to start in January 2020 and aims to be completed by next summer.



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