Serving Stone-in-Oxney and Ebony, Kent
Stone Community Recreation Group
Our project started in November 2011, when a letter was sent to the Parish Council commenting on the poor state of repair of the play area.
The field is in the centre of our village. The land was given to the Parish in the 1920’s for use as a recreation ground and there has been a cricket pitch there ever since. A group of volunteers got together and produced a questionnaire, followed by a public consultation and fundraising began. The project soon evolved to include the adjoining overgrown field and in September 2013 an all weather path was laid and the old pond near the path was dug out, cleared and reinstated. All the work was done by volunteers from the village. A bench donated by the W.I. was placed by the path for people to rest.
June 2014 saw the first piece of play equipment installed – a nest swing that could be enjoyed by all ages, funded in part by the Kent Community Fund matching funds with the Group’s money that they had raised. This was followed later in the year by a climbing log cabin, a gravity spinning bowl and swing bars with money from Awards for All – from the Lottery Fund – along with some nest boxes and a hedgehog house.
As the path was so popular it was extended to the gate making all year round accessibility to the field. A junior wildlife group started with a meeting to conduct a small mammal survey the results of which were sent to the Kent Mammal Group providing information for their survey. The next event was learning to make a woodland fire with flint and steel and cooking damper bread. The restored pond was ready for pond dipping and an abundance of wildlife found including three types of newt, beetles and water spiders, confirming a healthy pond.
Another morning was spent building a bug hotel out of donated pallets and garden materials. The conservation side has become important and the boundary stream was dug out to lower the impact of flooding and open up a riverside walk. Hibernaculars were built along the edge and bird boxes put up.
November 2015 saw the first planting of the community orchard, which now has apples, plums, pears, cherries, cob nuts and a walnut tree, some of which have been sponsored by local residents. A Willow Tunnel has also been planted and a wildflower area created. There are plans to add to this.
Fundraising is ongoing to provide more play equipment, for new projects and for upkeep of the field. It is hoped more people will become involved and carry on the works for future generations. Fundraising events include an annual Afternoon Tea in the Field, when afternoon teas are served with sandwiches, cakes and scones. There are working party days organised for volunteers to help plant and clear, which are usually accompanied by tea and home made cake.
The field is now more readily accessed and enjoyed much more with the children playing on the new equipment, dog walkers being able to enjoy the paths and people spotting the abundance of wildlife.
November 2011 Letter to Parish Council
February 2012 Questionnaire
April 2012 Consultation
July 2012 Quiz evening and fundraising started
September 2012 Banked £1583.15
February 2013 Ashford Borough Council £500.00
March 2013 Kent County Council £1000.00
April 2013 Fete £625.00
September 2013 Path 1st phase Pond reinstated
November 2013 W.I. Bench donated
February 2014 Fete and donation £555.00
February 2014 Ashford Borough Council £1600.00
April 2014 Kent Community Fund Cheyne Court £2000.00
June 2014 Swing installed
August 2014 Awards for All £ 9656.00
September 2014 Log Cabin, gravity bowl and bars
October 2014 Path 2nd phase to gate
October 2014 Junior Group Mammal Survey
February 2015 Ashford Borough Council £1000.00
February 2015 Fete £650.00
March 2015 Lent Lunch £120.00
March 2015 Stream cleared out – hibernaculars built
March 2015 Bench at play area
April 2015 Fire Building morning ( junior)
May 2015 Pond Dipping
October 2015 Bug Hotel
November 2015 First tree planted Community Orchard
Pond cleared out
March 2016 Community Fund ( Tokens) £424.00
March 2016 Saplings/hedge Community Planting
April 2016 Stone Fete £525.00
May 2016 Reptile Hunt
September 2016 Moth Trapping
September 2016 Donations £340.00
October 2016 Field Clear Up Day and BBQ
October 2016 W.I donation from village book £200
March 2017 Stone Fete £400.00
April 2017 Spring Clean up day – tree trunk
May 2017 Church Flower Festival ( display)
July 2017 Kent County Council £2000.00
July 2017 Tower Slide – Rocker refurb
August 2017 Tea on the Field £357.00
November 2017 Lions Club £500.00
November 2017 Ashford Borough Council £700.
December 2017 Willow Tunnel planted
March 2018 Stone Fete £400
June 2018 Tea on the Field 2 £476.00
July 2018 New Football Goal
Information supplied by the Community Field Project committee