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Archive for the ‘Levenshulme’ Category

Earth Granny

Earth Granny

Around 100 people congregated just before sunset at the Quadrants in Levenshulme for this year’s wassail on Sunday 6th January.  After wassails in earlier years, then a break in 2018, the Friends decided to celebrate the orchard trees once again. New this year was the Earth Granny, in her pinny, declaiming “Wassail Wassail” – chanting her poem to bless the trees, their roots and the worms. Old Father Time made his usual appearance and the Choir with No Name sang three songs, wonderfully.

Attendees were offered cakes, mulled cider and apple juice, provided by Pam and Angelique and other helpers.  Brenda lent her gazebo and reusable cups. People brought food to share.  We made a ceremonial tour of the orchard to hang toast dipped in cider on the trees to ward off evil spirits and ensure good cropping; and the occasion was completed with a roaring bonfire looked after by Ian and Farooq.  A short firework display brought a sparkling end to proceedings!

Thanks to everyone from the local community who attended and contributed to the lively spirit of the event!

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Station South – crowdfunding success!

Levy-Front-5.jpgWe were delighted to hear from our friends at Station South that their crowdfunder has successfully raised £66,561 from 1,161 supporters in 64 days!

Pauline Johnston (Director of Station South CIC), has provided us with this update: “Station South are continuing to make good progress with the building. The roof is near completion, save for the insertion of glazing, which will be done at a set date in the future. The collaborative restoration with the building owners Railway paths Ltd is continuing at pace and planning and change of use applications are being drawn up for submission in preparation for the second round of vital repairs, which are out to tender currently. The successful crowdfunding campaign will go some way to supporting the continuation of some of the vital repair works that we are leading on, including the creation of a new floor throughout the building and connecting to main utilities.

Station South are also developing outline plans for the external site and are keen to progress a detailed co-design with community stakeholders along with offering opportunities to volunteer in Spring 2019. We’ll be sure to keep the Friends of the Fallowfield Loop involved in the process as we’re keen to have your continued support and input.”

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HandleBards on the Loop

Yesterday and last Wednesday the Loop acted as a great venue for performances by the HandleBards, a troupe of cycling actors who carry all the set, props and costumes they need to perform extremely energetic, charmingly chaotic and environmentally sustainable Shakespeare plays!

The HandleBards have an all-male and an all-female troupe, and this summer both are touring the UK.  On 25th July the Loop therefore hosted the boys performing “Twelfth Night”, and on 31st July it was the girls’ turn to appear, this time to give us “Romeo and Juliet”.  Both evenings were blessed with good weather and the Levenshulme Quadrants were awash with bicycles as good crowds turned out.

A large number of volunteers helped everything to run smoothly, so huge thanks to all concerned – and here’s hoping for repeat visits in the future!

 

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The Friends are delighted by, and fully supportive of, the plans for the former Levenshulme South station, as described in this article in the Manchester Evening News.  Here’s hoping these plans progress successfully and come to fruition!

Levenshulme South (photo: Manchester Evening News)

Levenshulme South (photo: Manchester Evening News)

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Yesterday some of the Friends were out working in and around the community orchard at the Levenshulme Quadrants.  We were joined by members of the Sale and Altrincham Conservation Volunteers to help with building two willow arches, using willow harvested from the Loop.  Some weeding and general maintenance around the orchard trees was also done.  Meanwhile, Incredible Edible Levenshulme were also out, working on their raised beds of herbs and fruit.  Many thanks to all helpers!

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Another winter, another wassail today to celebrate the orchard at the Levenshulme Quadrants and wish it a healthy and flourishing year ahead!  As in the previous several years, there was a bonfire, choir-led singing, fireworks, mulled cider, the fixing of ribbons and cider-soaked toast to the fruit trees and the conjuring of a Wassail Queen!

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A Pocket Full of Treasures

Sharon Campbell and Rachel Ramchurn today organised a creative workshop for children at the Levenshulme Quadrants, using clay and other natural materials for modelling treasures.

Treasured memoriesAli Gadeema and Martin Visceral, spoken word artists, helped to create poems to accompany the treasures in the ‘Gallery of Gilded Frames’ that Sharon Campbell was curating, while Rachel Ramchurn offered some hands-on clay experience making tiny treasures inspired by nature that could also go in the gallery. The works of art were made by a huge variety of ages.

Hearts and flowers

The sun shone and there was a great turn-out of families taking part.  Members of the Friends had prepared the ground beforehand, and were on hand as stewards and gazebo constructors on the day.  Members of Incredible Edible Levenshulme had weeded the vegetable beds and offered planting advice to children and their parents.  Many children also used the wild stretch of shrub land towards Broom Lane for hide-and-seek and tree-climbing!  Sharon writes, “What a splendid day! We had a really good turn-out and were busy all day.  The overall feel of the day, in the gorgeous October sunshine, was a buzzing community event…A huge thank you to all those involved.”  More pictures are here.

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Work at the Quadrants

Today volunteers were out, for one of our regular Thursday work days, to do some work at the Levenshulme Quadrants.  Particular tasks included:

  • weeding out the grass competing with the orchard fruit trees immediately around their trunks.
  • digging out self-seeded willows in the orchard area.
  • giving the grass a general trim in all four quadrants, partly in readiness for the “Treasures Workshop” on the 9th October.
  • the usual general litter pick and tidy.

 

Thanks to all of those who helped with the work – and new volunteers are always welcome to any of our events!

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At dusk on Old Tweflth Night, Sunday 17th January 2016, a hardy band turned out to celebrate our annual wassail of the community orchard at the Quadrants, Levenshulme (Crayfield Road).  This was a postponed and scaled-down version of the originally planned event (due to very heavy rain on the initial date of Sunday 3rd January), but nevertheless there was mulled cider, home-made apple cake, a procession round the orchard fixing cider-soaked toast (lucky birds) and ribbons to the fruit trees, and a firework finale!  With added cheery involvement from several passers-by, we hope to have set the orchard fair for continued flourishing through 2016!

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On Wednesday 12th December 2012 several of the Friends attended the North West Empowerment Awards ceremony.  These awards were open to community or voluntary groups that have delivered a project regarded as having made a positive difference in their community.  The Friends had been one of four shortlisted from 33 applicants in the “Better neighbourhoods” category, and although we did not win the prize we received a “highly commended” plaque for working with the Levenshulme groups on the community orchard!

North West Empowerment Awards – with thanks to North West Together We Can and Asian Lite Photographers Ian O’Brien and Stuart Rayson for the picture

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