The residency at the park is still ongoing. I had a great summer there, just got too busy to blog…bad artist.

My last blog was about the Big Lunch, which in fact turned out to be a Little Lunch but a very enjoyable little lunch. I met some great people who live local to the park and who wanted to get involved more actively.

Unfortunately then I got too busy with work to do all the workshops etc that I wanted to do so plans changed a bit. I used my time over the summer to get to know the park better, the people better and learn a bit about insects and plants to boot.

Park closes October to May so now is my time for research, planning and soon….making.

We had our AGM this week and though we still don’t know if we can stay on the site, the fight is still ongoing with the landowner, court dates keep getting changed but I’m still holding out hope. The Butterfly Park is magical, it has so many amazing qualities and for it to end now seems so very wrong so hope is what keeps all the volunteers going.

At the meeting I put forward my ideas for the rest of this year and they seem to be well received. There’s a really small pot of money from a sponsor that can be used towards the project which will be very useful.

The plans for this year involve a mobile allotment/trailer with A-frame to tow around schools/community centres to promote the park and to do planting/growing workshops with edible plants that attract butterflies/bees etc.

Secondly will be a refurbished caravan,stripped out and set up as a mobile visitor centre with a twist.

The twist being that as it is a ‘test’ product, to evaluate the need (or not) for a visitor centre on site. I’ll be asking people to write in a comment book about the need for a place to sit and reflect, read perhaps enjoy a warm drink.

The temporary mobile visitor centre will have a library made up of books about birds/insects/plants etc and a further section with artists books (also butterfly/insect based)

Museum-esque Lepodoptera specimen drawers filled with butterflies but hand made by local children.

Information sheets, leaflets, colouring sheets, mask and wing making kits.

Small workshops for up to 4 people can be held.

Also, I’ll be again curating a small art trail and asking for proposals for this soon. As the Butterfly Park is such a small charitable organisation there’s no money to offer artists, the sad state of affairs in todays economy but they have agreed that we can use a part of the small sum we received as a grant to have a peoples choice prize for the favourite artwork awarded at the end of the summer. Likely to only be something up to £100 if it happens but I think it’s really lovely that they have offered this.

Sunday 8th May 2011 will be our grand opening event. Hope to make it even bigger and better than last year.