Where’s your bin? –  Litter in the park

The weather has been glorious recently and this has meant plenty of people out and enjoying our beautiful park.

Litter and bins

Sad to say that the increase in users has gone hand in hand with an increase in litter. This has come at the same time as the Council has replaced some bins, moved others and removed a number as well. The new bins do look smart. 

Your response

Many people have approached us recently both in the park and on Facebook to comment on the bins, and the amount of litter and dogs’ mess in the park. Just look at this response from May!

So, what has changed with the bins?  

Bins in the paddling pool area

All of the litter bins within the popular paddling pool & young children’s play area have been removed or re-positioned so now there are no litter bins within the fenced off area. The amount of litter in this area has increased and of particular concern are nappies discarded by irresponsible parents. These are getting shredded by the local bird life and the residue is both hazardous to park users and extremely difficult for the litter pickers to deal with.

Bins have, however, been positioned by each of the entrance/exits to this area and we encourage everyone to use these.

Bins by the carpark

There used to be three bins by the car park – this has now been reduced to just one. FOHP litter pickers are finding piles of rubbish where the bins once stood. We encourage people to walk the extra few meters to the nearest bin and dispose of their rubbish responsibly.  

FOHP’s response to the litter

So much litter had been deposited in the park over the spring and summer weekends that Monday litter picking parties have been hastily assembled to clear the weekend litter – these extra sessions have continued throughout the summer. This is in addition to our normal Wednesday sessions. We would like to extend our thanks to all the litter pickers who continue to give up their time to keep our park clean and tidy. Thank you!

The community’s response – litter heroes!

As well as the FOHP litter pickers, it has been heartening to see an increase in the number of individuals who have been pitching in and picking up litter whenever they are in the park. We’ve had several messages on our facebook page from members of the public wanting to thank these amazing people. So, on behalf of all of us at FOHP, thank you! And keep up the good work.    

The Council’s response

We have talked to the Council about reinstating the bins that were removed – we have been told that these will not be reinstated. However, FOHP and the Council are working together on other solutions to the littering issue, and several options are being considered.

2 temporary wheelie bins have been placed in the park. We are currently in discussions with the Council to reposition these temporary bins to the areas that our volunteers say are most litter-prone. Watch this space!

Together, we have also launched an awareness campaign on Facebook and used our newsletter to highlight this issue. And both the Council and the Friends are looking into the options for “2 Minute litter pick” A boards that can be positioned around the park for anyone who wants to be a 2-minute litter hero.

What can I do?

If you are reading this, then I guess you are one of the 99% who disposes of their litter responsibly. Thank you! But if you would like to do something more to help keep our beautiful park clean and tidy, then consider joining one of our litter picking sessions. Find out more here. Alternatively, you could become the park’s latest “litter hero”.

As for me, I like to think of this little motto every time I am in the great outdoors: Take nothing but memories, leave nothing but footprints.

It’s great that so many of you have contacted us about these issues. Remember that in the first instance, you should report any problems in the park directly to the Council. You can do this by following this link to the Council’s “report a problem” page.

Enter the paddling pool area in “Stile”

One of the tasks accomplished by the Wednesday morning volunteers was the repair of the stile at the eastern side of the paddling pool area which was becoming a danger to users as you can see in the accompanying picture.

Before and after

The second picture shows Pete Bullock checking it out after the repairs had been completed.

We also replaced a number of missing and broken fence planks which will prevent dogs accessing the children’s play and paddling pool areas. It also helps prevent children escaping!

Paddling Pool Fundraising – save the pennies and…..

“Save the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves.”

That’s the old saying and it’s as true today as it ever was. Although we are confident of raising the funds necessary to save the paddling pool, we are not there yet and fundraising goes on.  The Friends have been really surprised at the amount of donations we have received in the collecting tins that you see in many  Hamworthy businesses and at park events. We have been overwhelmed by the amount generated – these collecting tins have so far contributed over £4500 to our paddling pool project.

This success is entirely due to you, the hundreds if not thousands of donors that have supported our project by not only dropping a few pence through the slot but often several pounds.
Pictured are the contents of the collecting tin from the Park Cafe that was emptied recently.  Most noticeable are the amount of silver and £1 coins compared to the copper – this directly reflects the support you are giving us and we really do appreciate it.
The eagle-eyed amongst you may have spotted ta few old pound coins and even the odd euro cent and an old German 10 pfennig piece – we are pleased to accept any of these. The banks will take the old pounds and we are investigating an organisation that will buy the many foreign coins we have accumulated.
Thank you!

Sorted in Dorset

On Saturday 21st and Sunday 22nd July, the Friends of Hamworthy Park had a free stall at the SORTED IN DORSET event in the park.

Our stall selling soft toys, key rings, coasters and cards etc raised £69.50 and we received £102.39 in donations, including £27.67 given to us by SORTED IN DORSET. We are very grateful for this ongoing support and greatly encouraged by the number of people who showed an interest in what we are doing, both with regard to the paddling pool and the park in general.

Many of the stall holders commented on the beautiful location – maybe we shall see some of them again in future.

Hamworthy Park wins Green Flag Award 2018

We’re pleased to be able to tell you that  Hamworthy Park has again been successful in the Green Flag Awards.

Along with volunteers from Poole Park and Upton Country Park, The Friends of Hamworthy Park went along to a celebratory photo shoot in Poole Park – a great big thank you to every who helps make Hamworthy Park an award-winning place to be!

Read more here.

What are the Green Flag Awards?

The Green Flag Award scheme recognises well-managed parks and greenspace, setting the benchmark standard for the management of recreational outdoor spaces across the United Kingdom and around the world.


Wild flowers! Wednesday volunteers

This week was a quiet one for the Wednesday volunteers (except for all the litter picking!)  but here is a picture of some flowers we do not have to look after – they look after themselves!

Whilst the main bed at the cafe has a good show of colourful flowers, there are other areas in the park that also have a splash of colour that occur naturally.

Here are some clumps of wildflowers on the shoreline at the eastern end. It would be a shame to lose these to erosion which is becoming quite a concern in this area of the park.

Stag beetles and flower beds – 20/06/2018

Have you seen the stag beetles in the park? More on that later.

Our rose bed is looking better every week although a good few heavy showers of rain would help…but only overnight, of course!  Today the Friends’ Wednesday volunteer group planted some antirrhinums and also a number of gladioli bulbs that were left over from the plant sale – it will be interesting to see how they do.

Whilst trimming the side shoots off the trunks of the young oak trees, one of the Friends came across this Stag Beetle (estimated about 7cm in length)  which apparently are quite rare.  Sophie, one of our volunteers, is going to get in touch with the Peoples Trust for Endangered Species who collect information on sightings and locations of these wonderful insects.
On a well-deserved break, the friends got chatting to a couple who had travelled down from Shaftesbury with their two grandchildren to enjoy a day in Hamworthy Park. Unfortunately, the sun was not shining that particular morning which kept them out of the paddling pool, but they were enjoying the play park instead.  They were telling us how they used to go to Sandbanks until they found our park which they now much prefer. Hopefully, they stayed on until the afternoon when the sun finally came out and it really started to warm up.

Wednesday Volunteers – 13th June 2018

An update from the Wednesday volunteer group.

It’s not all work on Wednesday mornings; here two volunteers take time off from weeding to admire our rose bed,  The roses have attracted favourable comments from many park users who have expressed their appreciation at the colourful display we have achieved – a number saying they cannot believe how big the blooms are this year.

The primulas along the front of the bed are beginning to look untidy but as they provided such a great colourful spectacle throughout the winter months we are reluctant to remove them. Hopefully, they will be even better next winter!

Next Wednesday we intend to remove the yellowing leaves and plant a row of summer flowering mixed colour antirrhinums between them.

As we were gardening, we noticed that the dry weather has shown up a large area of discoloured grass – we believe the marked difference in the colour of the grass indicates the location of the old boating lake.

See this old picture of the park and compare for yourself – what do you think?