Community Events and Covid-19

Here’s an update from our community events team on what we have and haven’t been able to do this year:

As you can imagine this piece on events and workshops is going to be quite short but we hope you enjoy it and perhaps get inspired to join our merry band on the events committee!

It all started so well… last autumn’s successful Apple Day and Halloween activities boded well for 2020 and we were delighted to welcome Tim Star to the events committee to step into the gap left by much-missed volunteer Karen Shields. A well-attended series of autumn activities including our ever-popular bat walk and Christmas wreath workshops were due to be followed by March’s quiz night but as the effects of the pandemic in Italy heralded what lay ahead for the UK, we decided to pull the plug on the event and we very glad we did. We’re very grateful to all those who donated the cost of their quiz tickets to helping us stay afloat.

Since then despite it being the Triangle Garden’s 20th anniversary and the 10th anniversary of the refuribishment of the Pavilion, the only events we have been able to hold have been our Foraging Walks which, with reduced numbers, have been able to comply with the Rule of Six. Despite having to increase the standard rate to cover our costs we kept the concessions rate at £10 to maximise participation. All were quickly sold out and we plan to hold more next year.

We were very grateful for the opportunity to share a virtual version of Benslow Open Gardens on social media – an event organised by Tish Cook and fellow Benslow residents that was supposed to raise money for our work if it had gone ahead. Fingers crossed it will be possible in some form next year and our thanks to those who donated as a result of seeing our socila media posts or the lovely piece in the Comet.

Thanks also go to our long standing links with local bee charity Buzzworks who enable us to take advantage of their monthly farmers’ market stall in Hitchin to sell our apple juice, sales of which usually rely heavily on our community events. This year’s apple crop was a good one and although group picking sessions were not possible, many of our usual ‘apple donors’ did us proud with their contributions.

Our small events committee has been far from idle this year with plenty of preparation work going into events that sadly couldn’t happen.  Regular zoom meetings have kept us going amid the added joys of home-schooling and ramped up ‘proper jobs’ for many of us.

Even with no events to run, we know that we need more members for when restrictions allow us to get something up and running. So if you’re interested in joining us please get in touch.

Scarlett, Vicky, Mel and Tim,
Events & workshops committee

The image is of one of the Benslow Open Gardens in May