HLF Educational Project
In March 2009, the Heritage Lottery Fund awarded the Trustees one of its small grants for an Educational Project. The Project involves both 14 Local Schools plus several Interest Groups.
The main aim of the Project is to enable people of all ages and interests to learn about and appreciate two things. First, the life and work of Sir John Betjeman. Secondly, both the natural and visual features of the Park. The Project seeks to attract Community involvement and participation.
In summary, the main features of the Project include:
- Three double-sided, tall and durable Educational Exhibits. The Exhibits have been designed by a national firm of Creative Design and Museum Consultants: Bremner and Orr. The design work involved close discussion with members of The Betjeman Society, local schools and interest groups. Bremner and Orr have undertaken many major interpretive projects. They include the Roald Dahl Museum and the Lewis Carroll Exhibition Visitor Centre.
- Three purpose-designed ‘learning/viewing spaces’. These include the provision of some natural seats (Sarsen Stones) for staff and students) adjacent to the Exhibits. Close by, wild flower demonstration plots are being planted.
- Creation of a Web-Site (as a back-up to the Exhibits). This is for widespread use in liaison with the local Museum.
- A Teachers’ Pack and Information Leaflets.
- Visits, Open Days, Workshops and Consultation for Schools and Interest Groups.
- Appointment of a one-day per week Website and Communications Co-ordinator: Joanne Dugmore. She is involved in publicising uses of the Park and servicing the Schools’ Open Days & Events over 18 months.
- Three drama productions by the students of King Alfred’s College, focusing on JB, his life and work.
The themes, covered by the Exhibits, are:
- ‘The life and works of JB’, especially during his 20+ years in Wantage;
- ‘Mother Nature’ as reflected in the writings of JB and the features of the Park;
- ‘A Sense of Place’ featuring buildings and structures, which JB helped to protect, preserve and conserve both locally and nationally.
For those Local Schools situated outside Wantage, the project budget includes a sum to assist with transport costs involved in visits to the Park.
Time-Scale & Funding
The Project consists of 3 Phases:
- Consultation & Assembly of Information (March ’09 to Jan ‘10)
- Design, Construction & Installation (Feb ’10 to Mar ’11)
- Use by all Interest Groups (April’11 to 31 July 2012)