Talented young artists at Churchtown Primary School in Southport created some outstanding artwork in support of a growing campaign to improve the Botanic Gardens, and the Botanic Gardens lake in particular.
Over 500 pupils took part in an art competition with four different themes.
The winning entries will be on display for visitors to see when the Botanic Gardens Family Fun Day takes place 10am-4pm this Sunday (19th June 2022).
They will feature on trees throughout the park as part of a Treasure Hunt, with visitors invited to discover them as they enjoy the day.
Churchtown Primary School will have a stall present on the day.
The art competition was organised by Jess Thwaites from the Make A Change For Botanic campaign group, which is determined to bring about vital safety improvements in the historic park, which is directly next to the school.
Each child has been sent home with an A4 piece of paper to do their Art work on for half term homework.
There were four themes for the competition:
Nursery and Reception – Park animals
Year 1 & 2 – What I love about the park
Year 3 & 4 – What I’d love to see in the park in the future
Year 5 & 6 – The impact of litter on the park
Children were asked to make the pictures bright and colourful, and could be coloured using crayons, felt pens, paints etc.
The winning entries for each class were then selected by Mrs Payne, Mrs Thornley and Mr Dowd and announced in assemblies on Friday 17th June.
David Rawsthorne came into school on Friday to praise pupils for their efforts and to present prizes, which were tubs of Haribo sweets and Cadbury’s Heroes, which had been donated by Tesco supermarket and Co-Op supermarket in Southport.
Churchtown Primary School Headteacher Mrs Payne said: “I am delighted at the number of children who entered this competition. To have over 500 entries shows interest, enthusiasm and excitement from our children not only in the Family Fun Day but the Botanic Gardens itself.
“The majority of our families access school each day through the gardens and the children often refer to our school as ‘the school in the park’, so for the children, taking part in a competition linked to the park was something they really wanted to do.
“They came up with innovative, creative and practical ideas for changes to the park and they captured the wildlife in their pictures with great detail.
“We are thoroughly looking forward to supporting this event both through our art work treasure hunt and our school stall.
“Please come along and find us on the day.”
Make A Change For Ben was set up by David Rawsthorne after the tragic death of his best friend, Ben Smith-Crallan. Ben, 37, died after falling into the lake at the park.
The day is also being supported by the Botanic Gardens Community Association, whose volunteers have been leading the maintenance of the park for the past 12 years.
David Rawsthorne said: “We were majorly impressed by the quality of over 500 entries which were drawn by the children at Churchtown Primary School. They were all brilliant.
“This Sunday, at the Botanic Gardens Family Fun Day, visitors will be able to discover the winning pictures in an art trail throughout the park.
“We are looking to speak with the Headteacher next week and would then love to be able to laminate pictures from the school and present them on the mural backing board next to the lake.
“That would be brilliant for visitors to the park to be able to enjoy this summer.”
People are invited to enjoy fun for all ages when the free Botanic Gardens Family Fun Day takes place 10am-4pm this Sunday.
Taking place on the same day as Father’s Day, it’s the perfect place to enjoy a real family day out at one of the North West’s most beautiful parks.
The event is sponsored by Monkey Puzzle Day Nursery in Southport.
Visitors will be able to enjoy a range of events and attractions, including: performances from local dance companies, The Wigan Brass Youth Band, giant bubbles, inflatables, live music from Sandgrounder Radio and Mighty FM, donkey rides, a petting zoo, and much more besides.
A number of local businesses and charities have signed up to take stalls, including: NW Heritage, Woodlands Animal Sanctuary, Vintage Collectables, Marshside Fog Bell, Sunseekers Kids Books, Forever Melts and Jewellery and more.
Merseyside Police will be on site with a police van for the kids to see and explore.
The day has been organised by the Make A Change For Botanic campaign group, which is raising money to make vital improvements to the park. Their fundraising efforts recently saw the purchase and installation of two new water aeration fountains for the lake.
When the Botanic Gardens Family Fun Day takes place, the junction of Bankfield Lane and Verulam Road will remain closed, as United Utilities continues its work in the area.
There are excellent public transport links and people can also walk if they live close by.
Stalls and attractions will be accepting cash on the day.
Public toilets are available in the park, with a 20p charge. Proceeds go towards helping local volunteers to maintain the facility.
While the day is free, people are being invited to donate what they can to support the work of the Make A Change For Botanic campaign.
Botanic Gardens Family Fun Day organiser Jess Thwaites said: “We are delighted to be bringing this event to Southport and the Botanic Gardens to celebrate the unveiling of the new wall mural.
“It will be a much-deserved day of fun and entertainment to the whole community.
“The day is as much about supporting local businesses with their stalls, promoting awareness of the importance of looking after and improving the park along with raising much needed funds.
“I ask that people come along, enjoy the events we’ve put on and if they can give a little at the gates to one of our very kind volunteers then that would be amazing.
“There are too many people to thank for their efforts to help me put this day together, but special thanks to David Rawsthorne, the Botanic Gardens Community Association, Sammie Rudge for the artwork, Replica Print for the printing, Churchtown Primary School for their involvement in getting their children involved, all of the volunteers, Southport Rotarians and Green Sefton for their support.
“The day includes an art display from the children at Churchtown Primary school who have worked so hard to create some wonderful pictures for us.
“We also have live dance performances all morning from local dance companies, The Wigan Youth Brass Band in the afternoon along with Sandgrounder and Mighty Radio on site all day. “We have gigantic bubbles, inflatables, rides, stalls, donkey rides, a petting zoo, animal talks, a face painter and a craft tent to name a few.
“The Settle Inn at the Botanic Gardens will be providing a bbq and refreshments.
“It’s set to be a fabulous event! I can’t wait.
“Programmes with the day’s events, times and locations will be on sale for 50p at the gate and I hope everyone can spare that to join in the fundraising. Every little helps!
“Fingers crossed the sun shines too! See you all there.”
- The Botanic Gardens Family Fun Day will be held at the Botanic Gardens, Churchtown, Southport, on Sunday, 19th June, between 10am and 4pm. It is sponsored by Monkey Puzzle Day Nursery.
- Would you like to help the campaign to improve the Botanic Gardens in Churchtown in Southport? Please join the Make A Change For Botanic Facebook group here.