Category Archives: News/Events

BIRD BOX PHOTOGRAPHS

Check out the picture gallery where you will find photographs recently taken whilst checking the bird boxes with pupils from Rotherfield School.

The Friends of the Millennium Green, by their subscription donations, have helped us to buy Woodcrete boxes which are quite expensive but give greater protection to the birds. Thanks to your contributions we now have twenty of these boxes. We are most grateful to you all.

SLIPPERY SURFACES AND CORRECT FOOTWEAR

We have received a small number of complaints from walkers on the Green that certain areas are muddy and slippery. The Green is an open space and still is basically agricultural land and particularly after wet weather there will be areas that are not in the best condition. We don’t want to cover the Green with man made footpaths as that will undermine the concept of it being an open wildlife area.

WE WOULD URGE ALL WALKERS TO WEAR THE CORRECT FOOTWEAR WHEN WALKING ON THE GREEN SO THAT THE RISK OF SLIPPING IS REDUCED TO A MINIMUM.

Bonfire Society, Rotherfield Trust and Crowborough Rotary Grants

The Trustees of the Millennium Green were delighted and very grateful to receive grants from the above organisations. A substantial grant came from  the Rotherfield Trust, a smaller but yet still substantial grant came from the Bonfire Society and a smaller but nevertheless welcome grant from Crowborough Rotary Club. The Trustees would like to thank all these organisations for their generosity which will enable us to look after the Green in a much better way and has enabled us to purchase equipment which makes it easier for us to maintain the Green on behalf of all the local residents and visitors who use the Green.

The Green is maintained by the Trustees and volunteers and a work party is held on the first Sunday of every Month. If you would like to help and put something back into your village community then turn up in working clothes at 10.00am on the first Sunday at the Station Road entrance, just down from the village car park. We normally work until 12 noon.You will be very welcome even if you can only spare half an hour.

Once again, our grateful thanks to the organisations who have given us these grants which will benefit all of us who live in Rotherfield and surrounding areas.

REFURBISHED CAMBRIDGE ROLLER

Trustees Michael White and Barry Hawkins repaired and refurbished the old horse drawn Cambridge roller which has been lying in brambles for a number of years. It is estimated that the roller was manufactured sometime in the late 1800’s and is now getting on for 140 years old.

The old timber frame was removed and the old bolts cut off with an angle grinder. The new oak timbers were installed with new bolts and the roller brought back to almost its original condition.

NEW GATE INSTALLATION

A new metal gate has been installed on the Green. It is a self closing pedestrian gate and is situated between Upper and Lower Wallis fields.

The purpose of the gate is to allow pushchairs and wheelchairs to more easily access other parts of the Green, when ground conditions allow, without having to negotiate the restrictions of the kissing gate.

Members of the public using this gate are asked to let the trustees know what they think of it and how useful it is so that they may determine whether it will be beneficial to install similar gates at other locations. Please email your comments to our secretary, John Richardson, and send to john@rotherfieldmillenniumgreen.co.uk

REFURBISHED CAMBRIDGE ROLLER

Trustees Michael White and Barry Hawkins have repaired and refurbished the old horse drawn Cambridge roller which has been lying in brambles for a number of years. It was probably manufactured in the late 1800’s so now is probably almost 140 years old.

The old timber frame was removed and the old bolts cut off with an angle grinder. New oak timbers were measured and drilled to accept the new bolts and were fixed into position. The towing beam was then bolted to the new frame and two bracing struts cut and fixed.

The final job will be to move the roller to a new position to display it more prominently as this machine is a feature of the Green and part of its agricultural history.

Ring RollerThe above photograph shows the refurbished roller

TIME CAPSULE

Following the success of the Meadows in the Weald Project a time capsule will be buried on the Green at 10.00am on the 24th March 2015.  The Time Capsule is made of plastic and measures 60cms in length and 16cms diameter. It will be tightly sealed and the contents will also be bagged in the hope that this will  help to prevent decay.

The children of Kipling Class at Rotherfield Primary School under the guidance of Nicola Robertson  were invited to bring along personal items to put in the capsule and these will be supplemented by items found on the Millennium Green.

Pupils from the school plus some teachers will attend the ‘burial’ together with the Trustees and Mrs Norma Timmermans who has sponsored the capsule in memory of her husband. The Trust Chairman, Michael White, has provided a stone marker slab dated for 50 years hence. The stone slab will be dated 2065 and the hope is that the capsule will remain under it, undisturbed until it is dug up.

When the time capsule is opened in 50 years time it is hoped that some of the children now attending Rotherfield Primary School will be there to see the opening when they can tell their children and grandchildren how they participated in the original burial of the Time Capsule and how they helped with the Meadows in the Weald project

All Rotherfield residents are invited to witness the ‘burial’

MEADOWS IN THE WEALD PROJECT

Rotherfield Millennium Green Trust- our Meadows in the Weald project.

 

With the help of the Heritage Lottery Award the Rotherfield Millennium Green Trust has teamed up with Life Wisdoms, Rotherfield Primary School and volunteer researchers to work together on an oral history project examining the history of the Green. Miss Robertson’s class of year 4 and 5 pupils are the lucky explorers.

So far we have held three sessions with the children. The first was a day trip to the Beech Estate near Ashburnham. This is a traditionally farmed estate with wildflower meadows which are cropped for hay and then grazed. Despite a couple of coach problems, 31 children plus teachers and helpers arrived safely at this remote farm in the beautiful High Weald countryside. We congregated in a restored thatched, threshing barn and Keith Datchler, Estate Manager, gave an introduction to the farming on the estate followed by a question and answer session to get the children thinking about bio-diversity.

Fortunately the sun decided to shine and everyone set off through the meadows spotting a wide range of wildflowers. The children’s exuberance showed as they rushed hither and thither spotting different plants. At the top of the hill Keith showed them some rock outcrops which it was believed had been used in Mesolithic times, 10,000 years ago. He explained how the geology of the area had influenced its use.

Later that week three of the Trustees led a lesson on the history of the Millennium Green. Richard Mann used maps and aerial photos to explain the location, the creation and the running of the Green. Roger Billingham then displayed some old photographs of village life and encouraged the children to explore how to interpret them when trying to understand how things were different in Rotherfield a century ago. John Richardson gave them plenty to gasp over when he brought out a selection of artefacts found on the Green; the animal skulls and traps certainly raised some excited chatter. The lesson was followed by a walk around the Green led by six of the Trustees and their enthusiasm enhanced the children’s appreciation of the area. In the afternoon, John got their creative urges going by encouraging them to act a possible scene from the life of a hop picker. The school plan to hone the children’s acting skills and give us a complete play in the future.

The most recent teaching session, led by Anita Broad, our oral history guru, focussed upon history research. It had the children thinking about what is research, what techniques can be used to investigate things, what human traits and disciplines are valuable and the importance of recording the results. The idea of a time capsule containing material from the project stimulated ideas from the children.

In parallel we have been recruiting both adult researchers and potential oral history interviewees for future sessions. The response is very encouraging; there are many people who have memories of playing around the MG fields as children and of farming in the area. We feel sure that the shared efforts of pupils, villagers and Trustees ably led by our Life Wisdom tutors will produce a memorable insight into the Green in years gone by.

MESSAGE FOR FRIENDS OF RMGT

In order provide our Secretary and Treasurer with a better and more instant communication channel to members of the Friends of Rotherfield Millennium Green Trust we would like to ask all Friends to let us have details of their email addresses. Please could you send the email details to either John Richardson at john.ric@btinternet.com or Philip Rowcliffe at phil@rotherfieldmillenniumgreen.co.uk . Your email addresses will not be passed to anyone outside the Trust and will only be used for communicating trust business, news and information.