Visit from our patron the Rt Hon Frank Field MP

On Saturday 21st September I was proud to take our Frank around Flaybrick on an hour-long tour. There was just so much in the way of progress to show him. First stop was his tree in the NC section, he was so pleased that he wanted a selfie with it! He was concerned about the bark damage though and he offered to pay for a tree guard.

Onto the Ed McHugh memorial and I explained that Luke Agnew had done a great job in organising and funding this new memorial. I also showed him the nearby Hamm grave with its new headstone paid for by a member of the public and a sign of the increased confidence the public are showing in Flaybrick.

He then walked the length of our woodland walk and appreciated the springy bark mulch underfoot. I told him that Ranger Niel Mutch had assisted the volunteers in making the 400 metre walk which took about 2000 man hours to create. He greatly appreciated the view and that it showed an array of church towers and domes.

Frank Field on The Flaybrick Nature Trail

On then to the CE section where we could see a huge sweep of clearance work along the Loch Ah Tam wall with brash piles all the way down. No doubt at all as to how much work we are doing. I called over everyone and he thanked them for their efforts. As we spoke, two members of the public approached and said how much they appreciated what we are doing and could they join and start work! Couldn’t have been better timed! It was now our chance to thank Frank and I presented him with a copy of the Kemp garden History book to commemorate the completion of 15 years as our patron.

A small token of thanks to Frank Field for his patronage to Friend's of Flaybrick over the past 15 years

We then made our way to the chapels to meet the open day and walks teams. He was really impressed by the clearance of the arch infills done only days before by the council contractors. He appreciated that we had had to work long and hard to achieve the clearance and overcome planning objections.

Frank stops for a photo with volunteers David, Graham, Jayne and Brian.

At the end of the visit he said he had found the morning personally very uplifting and expressed his appreciation and thanks for all that we are doing.

(the original plan for a social event to commemorate Franks 15 years as patron was not possible as Frank had to return to London that day earlier than expected and so could only spare one hour with us in the morning. This should have been made clear to the membership and I apologise for any problems this may have caused).

John Moffat

Posted in News.