Park praised

An­other suc­cess­ful year for Friends

Rutherglen Reformer - - AGM -

The Friends of Cam­bus­lang Park held a suc­cess­ful an­nual gen­eral meet­ing.

At the AGM, held in the Cam­bus­lang In­sti­tute last Wed­nes­day evening, the Friends were able to cel­e­brate an­other suc­cess­ful year in the park, which has been trans­formed in re­cent years.

It was stressed that key to this was the suc­cess­ful part­ner­ship work­ing be­tween South La­nark­shire Coun­cil and the vol­un­teers from the Friends.

Chair­man Ed­ward Cais gave his an­nual re­port, quot­ing a poem by Wil­liam Wordsworth.

He said: “I wan­der’d lonely as a cloud, That floats on high o’er vales and hills; When all at once I saw a crowd, A host of golden daf­fodils; Be­side the lake, be­neath the trees, Flut­ter­ing and danc­ing in the breeze.”

Ed­ward con­tinue: “If Wil­liam Wordsworth had been living in Scot­land to­day, I am sure that Cam­bus­lang Park around the Preach­ing Braes could have sup­plied the in­spi­ra­tion for his poem, The Daf­fodils.

“Now, of course, the lower pond is not of Lake Dis­trict lake pro­por­tions, it pos­sesses nei­ther a bay nor sparkling waves, and I’m not en­tirely sure about the 10,000 daf­fodils, but there is no doubt what­so­ever about the beau­ti­ful sight that greets your eyes as you de­scend the steps into the park close to the me­mo­rial cairn.

“This has been my first year as the Friends of Cam­bus­lang Park chair­per­son. Nor­man Rae’s six-year reign as found­ing chair­per­son would have been a hard act to fol­low but for the good-na­tured sup­port of Nor­man him­self, my fel­low of­fice-bear­ers and the rest of the com­mit­tee. I do en­joy be­ing kept right when get­ting some­thing wrong!

“The Friends have ex­pe­ri­enced an­other full year of regular an­nual events, in­clud­ing spring and au­tumn clean-ups and plant­ing, Teddy Bears’ Pic­nic, Fam­ily Fun Day, Bark in the Park, na­ture walks, Hal­lowe’en Party, Back in Time and carol singing. Each event gen­er­ates its own par­tic­u­lar at­mos­phere and is en­joyed and greatly ap­pre­ci­ated by the par­tic­i­pants. That is ev­i­dent from the com­ments peo­ple make to us.

“The splen­did ap­pear­ance of the Park and the suc­cess of th­ese events may be at­trib­uted to the ded­i­ca­tion and part­ner­ship work­ing ap­proach of South La­nark­shire Coun­cil staff and the Friends. The as­sis­tance of vol­un­teers at events is also greatly ap­pre­ci­ated.

“Nev­er­the­less, a lot of work falls upon a few shoul­ders and the Friends con­tinue to ad­dress the is­sue of how to at­tract fresh blood and new mem­bers in or­der to con­tinue the good work, main­tain the park in its re­stored state, and de­velop it by seek­ing fur­ther im­prove­ments.

“It bears re­peat­ing that this re­mains the aim of the Friends, so that more and more peo­ple per­ceive the park as a safe place to visit for en­joy­ment of na­ture, re­lax­ation, ex­er­cise and play. The word is spread by word of mouth and pub­lic­ity.

“In the lat­ter re­gard, the Ruther­glen Re­former has been ex­cel­lent, de­vot­ing pages and pages over the year to pic­tures, re­ports and an­nounce­ments of ac­tiv­i­ties in the Park.

“Eter­nal vig­i­lance is re­quired to keep lit­ter, graf­fiti and van­dal­ism at bay. Th­ese is­sues have been much re­duced in ex­tent, but they still rear their ugly heads. In this re­gard, the Friends are very grate­ful for the pos­i­tive part­ner­ship the coun­cil and the Friends en­joy with the com­mu­nity po­lice, whose con­stant pa­trols by both uni­formed and plain­clothes po­lice serve to con­tain th­ese forms of an­ti­so­cial be­hav­iour.

“It was a high­light of the year when, in Au­gust, South La­nark­shire Coun­cil and the Friends re­ceived a Green Flag Award for Cam­bus­lang Park. It was a tremen­dous ac­co­lade, since a park or green space is as­sessed against eight cri­te­ria re­lat­ing to whether it: is wel­com­ing; is healthy, safe and se­cure; is clean and well-main­tained; is sus­tain­able; man­ages con­ser­va­tion and her­itage; has com­mu­nity in­volve­ment; mar­kets it­self; and has good man­age­ment. The chal­lenge now is to re­tain Green Flag sta­tus and the Friends are con­fi­dent that they and their South La­nark­shire Coun­cil part­ners are up to that chal­lenge!”

Af­ter the meet­ing, Ed­ward told the Re­former: “We re­ceive many favourable, in­deed glow­ing, com­ments from users about the park, for which we are ex­tremely grate­ful. There are ideas for fur­ther im­prove­ments, but even sus­tain­ing the park in its re­stored con­di­tion re­quires a great deal of or­gan­i­sa­tion and work. We en­joy do­ing this to­gether very much, but we could use some more heads and pairs of hands.

“So we would like to ap­peal to those of your read­ers who know and love the park and wish it to be there for them and their chil­dren, to con­sider con­tribut­ing a lit­tle of their time to that end.

“Also, if any­one would like to be in­volved in or­gan­is­ing events, they would be very wel­come. They should please con­tact the Friends of Cam­bus­lang Park on our web­site at www.cam­bus­lang­park.co.uk by com­plet­ing the in­cred­i­bly short join us form.”

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