Thank you for letting us know what a fantastic afternoon you all had. As you know The Friends Summer Concert is organised completely by Volunteers, and what a fabulous job they made of it! This year's "Music in the Park 2012", usually held in July, was brought forward to incorporate and celebrate our Gracious Queen's Diamond Jubilee, but after the washout of Saturday and Sunday we really didn't know if you would join us in the park! No worries there, record attendance achieved! Eight and a half thousand of you!After many months/days/hours and minutes agonizing over if we had got it right, our expectations were far exceeded. We were extremely touched by the huge show of support from our park users.
At 1pm, solo artist 'Rick Christian' opened the concert to an audience that was to continue to grow to our largest yet! Even the rain couldn't dampen the mood up went the umbrella's with the deckchairs remaining fiercely guarded, Rick played on. It was fabulous to see the good old British spirit shine through willing the clouds away and the sun came out for the rest of the day.
Our second act 'Copper Face Jack', raised the bar and our spirits a little farther, and by the time our last act, 'The New Serenaders', with their calypso tunes wafting in the summer breeze, it seemed summer had finally arrived! Raising the temperature and everyone's spirit just a little more with "Feeling Hot, Hot, Hot", our work was complete with the crowd taking to the green dance floor!
Leisure 2000 ensured the children were entertained with their excellent funfair. Alongside this, fantastic food was in plentiful supply all day long from our very own Wok Man, Hog Roast and the Park Café.
What a wonderful afternoon! We always say, "Boy that took some organising!" But every one of us is filled with pride and joy when we stand back and see what we have achieved. We sincerely hope we have shown what a great place Raphael?s Park is, and what a few very dedicated people can do.
Our many thanks to our brilliant team of volunteers, our sponsor A.C.Preou Limited, www.preou.co.uk , TimeFM,the Parks Protection Team and to you, our supporters, for taking the time out of your busy holiday schedules to spend a few precious hours in our lovely park on that very memorable Bank Holiday afternoon, because without you we couldn?t have raised a whopping £4300 to enable us to continue to support our beautiful parks!
Year Ending 31st December 2011
ANNUAL REPORT ? A word from the Chairman
For the Friends of Raphael & Lodge Farm Park, this year has been amazingly successful. We have raised a huge amount of money hosting events and fundraising through large corporation, it is without doubt that our incredible team of volunteers had pulled out all-stops.
Three years of planning, discussing and striving came to a head in July this year when we together with the London Borough of Havering, were given the fantastic news that the Raphael Park, Stage II, Heritage Lottery Fund £1,787.700.00 application had been successful and that Veolia Havering Riverside Trust had pledged a further £200,000.00. Thanks to Havering, for putting this bid together and for believing in our Park and Friends Group. Together we will make a difference.
So to summarise over the next three years our park is to receive a *£2,693,365.00 restoration and a ten year maintenance plan. The £6,607.00 we have raised from our quiz nights and summer concert will compliment these restoration works with a picnic area in the woodland. We are extremely proud of our great team of volunteers, who are dedicated to our aims and objectives, to ensure that Raphael & Lodge Farm parks, are a fun and safe place for all to enjoy and, to protect and preserve for future generations.
We would like to thank our great team for all your effort and dedication. Thank our sponsor A.C.Preou Limited for their unwavering support. Thank The Heritage Lottery Fund, Veolia Riverside Trust and London Borough of Havering for helping us realise our ?2004 Wish List?. Finally we would like to thank all the park users and those that have attended our fund raising events who have helped make this all possible.
For a full detailed list of our activities through out this year please see the attached Activity and Achievement Annual Report.
*It should be noted that these large sums of money are not banked with the Friends group, they are held in named accounts by the London Borough of Havering
Annual Report 2011
Activates & Achievements
Mid-week litter pick: takes place at 10am, 1st Tuesday of each month, Len Oatham meets volunteers at the Café.
Weekend litter pick; takes place at 10am, 3rd Sunday of each month, Trevor Preedy meets at Raphael Park playground.
We are in our fourth year of litter picking in both Raphael and Lodge Farm Parks, with a regular attendance of 9 people on a Tuesday. Trevor?s started our weekend litter picks in July this year, it takes place 10am on the 3rd Sunday each month, the team is building nicely with 3 to 4 regular helpers.
Linking up with the Younger Generation & Other Volunteer Groups:
On the 1st June, Len assisted HAVCO with the Pact Youth Group in Raphael Park?. Len helped the children litter pick and having recently completed his guided walk training Len was able to entertain the youngsters a short history of Raphael Park.
Len also arranged litter-picks with a group of autistic children supported by HAVCO volunteers.
Len also arranged a litter-pick with the Beaver colony from 3rd Squirrels Heath. Len said it was very gratifying to have the children help and see them having fun too.
We were also very grateful to the children of the Cubs and Scouts from the 3rd Gidea Park Group, who with the help of their Leaders and Len tidied our flowerbeds and took part in numerous litter picks throughout the year.
The Friends & Havering
Park Olympic Sports Day
Sport Havering held a pre-Olympic Sports Day in Raphael Park in May this year, to help out we provided shelter and refreshments for the competitors. We also took the opportunity to enlist a few new volunteers too.
Havering Green Spaces
Havering Green Spaces forum is now holding regular meetings; we are being represented at these by Len.
Havering Guided Walks Project
We were approached by the Regeneration and Strategic Planning Dept. who with the aid of funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund was developing guided walks in Gidea Park, Hornchurch and Harold Hill. Len took up the challenge on behalf of FORP to research Gidea Park?s rich heritage. When the guided walk routes were officially launched Len donned a costume to walk one of the three new routes. We hope to have our quarterly guided walks up and running late 2012.
Mayor of London ? Community Reception
Julia attended the Mayor?s community reception on May 10th. It was a great opportunity to meet and network with like-minded people.
Fund Raising & Raising Awareness
This year we held two quiz nights at St. Michael?s Church Hall. Included in the ticket price was a Fish and Chip Supper. Both events were fully supported with over 140 people at each, in total raising a whopping £2000.
Music in the Park
Our summer fundraiser this year, ?Music In The Park 2011? was a huge success. We were inundated with many compliments to our team of volunteers for hosting such a well-organized and extremely enjoyable day. We are very proud of our fantastic team achievements and thank them for their time and dedication. We raised £2400.00. Which will enable us to continue to support our aims and objectives; to ensure that Raphael & Lodge Farm parks are a fun and safe place for all, and of course to enable us to host events such as this.
Heritage Lottery Funding and Veolia Havering Riverside Trust
It is with great pride that the Friends of Raphael & Lodge Farm Parks were able to announce together with the London Borough of Havering that the Raphael?s Park HLF Stage II Application for the £1,787,700.00 grant was successful. Together with further funding from Veolia Havering Riverside Trust and the London Borough of Havering, bringing the total refurbishment budget to £2,663,365.00. We are very proud to be part of the project team and are delighted that our park will most definitely be preserved for future generations.
Further to many meetings with the Environment Agency, we were awarded with a £10,000 grant to start work on regenerating the park lake. A further £10,000 has been promised for year 2012/2013 and 2013/2014. This grant is all down to our David Drury?s determination to get our lake back in tip-top condition. Works will start mid to late 2012.
Official Friends Group Project
Our chosen project, the Raphael Park Picnic Area came second in the this years £5000 funding competition. Whilst we missed out on the funding to Harold Wood Park Friends group were still consider taking our project forward with our own monies, although we did not nearly have enough money to complete it as we wished. However late this year the winning Friends Group returned the funding to Havering who then passed the monies onto us. We were absolutely delighted and can confirm that Nick Butterworth has given us permission to have a carving of Percy the Park Keeper and some of his woodland friends. Nick has also very kindly agreed to provide us with drawings to enable our first class carvers to bring Percy back to the Park. Our carvers are based at Knebworth House and will provide an on-site carving day for park users to watch them at work, later in next year they will be displaying some of our commissioned works before they are delivered to us. The final fix will take place once the pathway refurbishment works get underway.
Friends Sponsored Flowerbed
We are now in our second year of stocking and maintaining our sponsored flowerbed in Raphael Park. Len and Don together with the scouts ensured that our beds were in tip-top condition.
Friends Sponsored Water Lilies
Len and Don along with Gary from Parks Maintenance Team, took to the water and planted ten water lilies at the northern end of the lake. We hope to see a colourful display of lilies next summer, we just hope the young plants haven?t been eaten by the lakes inhabitants.
Again Len and Don donned their gardening gear and stuck into planting over a thousand daffodil bulbs in the woods and various flower beds.
The Friends of Raphael Park & Lodge Farm Park are a non-political, not-for-profit community group made up of ordinary residents that are working with the council, police and other bodies to improve, protect and provide a safe and fun place for all to enjoy. If you would like to help us please contact us.