The Friends took part in the Nationwide Heritage Open Days Event again this year. It was great to be able to use the upstairs room of the pavilion with stunning views of the park and beyond.
We staged an Exhibition of the history of the park which featured the building of the park after WW1, designed by Captain Sandys-Winsch, using the labour of unemployed men and showed the development and changes in the park with archive photographs from its opening in 1933 to the present day.
New this year - History of Bowling in the park. This was very well attended with many people stopping to reminisce about their stories of playing bowls and looking at the vintage photos on view.
Also, because of the rich history of weaving and dyeing in the local area we presented an exhibition based on dyes extracted from plants grown in our dye beds. We organised various children's activities relating to dyeing and weaving.
We gave guided tree walks featuring some of the more prominent trees in the park and visitors enjoyed live music from the balcony courtesy of the Tatsters.View photos from the event
On weekdays, the flower beds to the south of Waterloo Park pavilion are normally quiet. One June day, however, they were absolutely buzzing with activity. Over 120 children from Angel Road Infant School have grown enough sunflowers from seed to fill two large flower beds and they visited recently to plant them in the park.
The children also took the chance to look at some of the other plants grown nearby, by Friends of Waterloo Park. Some children are hoping that, if the Friends are able to run family events this year, they will be able to craft with some of the yarns dyed from the plants in the Dyers’ Garden.
Several children have already let the Friends know that they have been back to the park with their families to see how their sunflowers are doing. Luckily, they have been well watered by the rain we have had lately. Their teacher says that the children regularly check on their plants as they pass through the park.
The Friends showed the children pictures of sunflowers grown in the park by local children, two years ago. They are surprised and delighted that the little seeds they planted may soon grow into plants which are taller than they are.View photos from the event
Together with volunteers from the RSPB we hosted the Big Garden Birdwatch again this year. We set up bird feeders in early January to entice the birds into a particular area of the park so that on the day the children would to be able to see the birds that came to feed. The children also enjoyed making bird feeders made from recycled bottes, apple and seed bird feeders and ‘bird kebabs’ which were made by threading fruit and cheese onto a wire circle. We hope the birds in their own gardens enjoyed the treat. It was another very successful event.View photos from the event
We put on a Christmas musical event in the café on the Saturday before Christmas. We are very lucky that some of our members are involved with musical groups and they gave their time freely to entertain the visitors to the café. We had lovely Christmas music from Waterloo Strings which was followed by folk music from the Green Willow Buskers.
Another successful event.
Heritage Open Days. The Friends group took part in this national event and opened the upstairs room and balcony of the pavilion so the public could enjoy the magnificent view. We staged an exhibition on the history of Waterloo Park. This involved a lot of research for the volunteers and some good teamwork to prepare the room for the exhibition. It was very well attended by the public who enjoyed our folk group who played on the veranda in the sunshine. We also ran a tree walk with some of our members taking visitors on a tree walk around the park identifying some of the more interesting trees.View photos from the event
As part of the Norwich Science Festival we joined with the Forum Science Team to put on ‘Our Super Hero World’. This was another very successful event which included fascinating activities with a science theme. The Friends Group had their own stall with quizzes, kite flying, making parachutes and a herb identification competition.View photos from the event
To celebrate the Norfolk Wildlife Trust’s 30 Days Wild we held a free family event ‘Go Wild in Waterloo’. It was a great day out and we had activities such as bark rubbing, making masks from clay, learning how to tell the age of trees and tree identification. Families learned about making compost, examining snails and creating pictures from natural materials. Children also enjoyed planting sunflower seedlings which had been grown from seed by our members. We followed the progress of the sunflowers right through the summer and encouraged the children to have their photo taken with the sunflowers and post them on our Facebook page. We ran a competition for the best photo and the winner was presented with their prize at our Heritage Open Day in September. We left the sunflowers for the birds and mice to enjoy in the winter. Children enjoyed the sunflowers so much we will do this again in 2020.View photos from the event
Together with the RSPB we hosted the ‘Biggest Garden Bird Watch’. The RSPB set up bird feeders in early January to entice the birds into a particular area of the park and on the day set up an impromptu ‘hide’ with binoculars for the children to be able to see the birds that came to feed. The children also enjoyed making bird feeders with sunflower seeds and lard encrusted pine cones or by threading fruit onto a wire circle. We hope the birds in their own gardens enjoyed the treat. It was a very successful event.View photos from the event
We joined forces with Britannia Enterprises to host a free event to celebrate Norfolk Day with Afternoon Tea, various activities for children and live music.View photos from the event
The Friends of Waterloo Park had an Art and Photographic Competition. This coincided with our Inaugural meeting and the prizes were presented at this meeting.View photos from the event