Friday, 16 June 2017

Anti-Social Behaviour

The Friends are aware of the reports of anti-social behaviour on the Field in the evenings and are liaising with the Town Council, Borough Council, Police and local residents.

Community Apple Pressing Event - 9 September 2017 - your opinion counts

Fact 1: Over 90% of apples in private gardens go to waste

Fact 2: 60% of all apples eaten or drunk in the UK are imported

Are you at a loss to know what to do with all your apples every year?  Do they sit rotting resentfully at the bottom of your garden?

Whether it’s a bucket full or a skip load, eaters, cookers, cider or crabs - help is at hand!

On Saturday 9th September, the Friends of QEII Daniel Park plan to host a communal apple pressing up at the new community orchard beside the primary school.  We also hope to provide children's activities, food and live music from local musicians.

Everybody from Whitchurch and the surrounding villages is invited to bring their ripe, undamaged apples from 9am on the day.  Even your cookers can be juiced.
Richard Paget from  will press them on site, and then take the juice away to be pasteurised, bottled and labelled with your name.  The juice will be sold back to you at a very reasonable price and will last for months in sealed glass bottles.

You could pool apples with fellow members of a local organisation, e.g. FOWPS, Testbourne PTA, Youth Club, and sell the juice to raise money for them.

But we need to gauge whether or not we will have enough local interest for this event to go ahead.  If you are interested and would like to receive more information, please email your answers to the following questions to by 21 July:
  • Do you have apples (anything from a bucketful to a skipload) that you would like to press?
  • Do you have a neighbour or friend who might also be interested?
  • Would you like any juice that you cannot drink to be sold in aid of a local good cause of your choosing?
  • Would you like to find out what kind of apples you have in your garden (e.g. eaters, cookers, cider)?
  • Would you like to make cider from your apples?
To give you an idea of quantities, one plastic crate (like our green glass recycling boxes) will hold enough apples to produce roughly 15 bottles of juice. 

Without feedback, the event won’t go ahead – SO DO PLEASE GET IN TOUCH!

Look out for leaflets which will be distributed around town shortly.

Contact: or 07979 908004

Tree SOS

The fine weather and longer evenings have seen increased use of QEII Daniel Park by local children, which is fantastic.  However, we are sad to report that a number of trees in our copses have been cut down or damaged.  Some trees have been sawn down, some have been cut with a penknife, and some have just been torn, pushed over or trodden on.  We think some of the trees have been used to make dens, but some appear to have been taken off-site and others presumably just damaged for the sake of it.
These trees were planted by BDBC using taxpayers' money, and are maintained by a small group of volunteers in their (limited) spare time as part of a careful programme of maintenance and conservation.
We are guessing that the sawing has been carried out by an adult.  The remainder of the damage seems to have been carried out by children.

Please can we ask all parents whose children use the Field to ensure that they follow the Woodland Trust’s guidelines on good den-making (reproduced here with their permission):

  1. Find a good foundation, i.e. large tree trunk.
  2. Build your framework around it by wedging a couple of large branches against the tree.
  3. Build the walls by collecting more branches and resting them against your framework.  Pack them tightly for strength and security.
  4. Use twigs and leaves to cover your den.
  • Don’t cut down, rip or damage any trees – only use fallen branches and twigs.
  • Do secure the branches properly.
  • Do be careful with large, heavy branches – drag rather than carry.
  • Do clear up after you.

For really clear guidance and pictures, see and specifically their “Den Building Sheet”.
And a last point: if you are allowing your child to use a penknife in a public place without your supervision, are you 100% certain they won’t have an accident?  Do they carry a “cuts kit”?  Are you sure the knife won’t fall into the wrong hands?  (See for some great safety tips on children and knives).