Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Moorhen on the Lily Pond

There has been one around for a week or so, but one usually only gets a very brief glimpse. I didn't have a long lens with me today, but it was good to get a decent view of it (just to the right of the irises in case you can't see it).

The mallards (see below) are now around the park quite often - usually two male and one female.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

May Day Fun - Saturday 9th May, 11am to 3pm

Tuesday, March 31, 2015


It was great to see the Bowling Green getting some use today - even if a few hailstones fell during the session! We hope to see it in regular use this summer.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Spring in Priory Park

Yes, spring is definitely here - the crocuses made a great show again this year, though they are now almost finished, the daffodils are just starting to flower, and I even found a couple of rhododendrons in flower today, with an attendant bee.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Another award for Friends of Priory Park

The Mayor's Civic Awards were announced on Friday, 13th March 2015 at a ceremony held at The Village Hotel in Dudley.

The Friends of Priory Park had been nominated by the Mayor as one of her four choices after seeing first hand their hard work and dedication during her civic engagements. All four choices were put to the public vote and thousands of people went on line to acknowledge their top choice. All four nominations were worthy winners. The public voted The Friends of Priory Park as their winner.

Pictured with the Mayor are their Chair Mariann Harris and Secretary Chris Rich who were present to receive the beautiful glass, designed by Allister Malcolm, Broadfield House Glass Museum.
Mariann Harris went on to say ' I would like to thank everyone who voted for us and say congratulations to the Friends Committee and wider group of volunteers who treasure Priory Park. I would also like to offer congratulations to all those who were nominated for an award and those who went on to receive special recognition'.
The glass design will be present in the park pavilion from Wednesday, 18th March and you are most welcome to come and see for yourself how beautiful it is.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Photoshoot on the Park on Sunday 22nd February

Mercifully the weather on the day was not quite as bad as the weather forecast had suggested, but it still prevented any outdoor photography! Anyway, the event was well-attended, and raised money for the forthcoming Red Nose Day. I think everyone enjoyed themselves, and the very enthusiastic and talented photography student from Evolve seems to have taken some really great photographs of the event ... but here you will have to rely on a couple of pictures I shot during the day (I have not posted any shots of the models as I'm not sure whether model release forms were signed!). As you can see, it wasn't just a photoshoot, there were other things on offer too; although I'm not usually a cake-eater, the offerings on the stand persuaded me to try some, and very good they were too!

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Vote for FoPP!

We have been nominated by the Mayor as one of her top choices for an award this year. However, the winner is dependent on the public vote, which is open now, but closes on the 27th February.

Please click on the link below for full information and to place your vote.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Photo shoot in support of Comic Relief on 22nd February

Apologies for the lack of posts here recently - the weather has meant that there has not been much to report.

Comic Relief is still a little way off, but we have news of an event (not organised by FoPP) which will be held in the park in support of  Comic Relief. On 22nd February there will be a photo shoot in the pavilion in the park. To quote from the information we have received:

"On the day I shall be doing funky hair and makeup makeovers, which shall be photographed by photography students from the Evolve College. I've also enlisted the help of hair and makeup students also."

The event will run from 10:30 to 16:00. It is hoped that we will be able to print photographs at the event within 2 minutes (technology permitting!) - which brings back memories of the photo shoot we did on Halloween 4 or 5 years ago!

It sounds like a fun event, and we hope that it will be well supported.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Happy New Year

Friends of Priory Park & The Green

Dear Friends,

As a brand new year begins, I would like to take this opportunity to say a sincere and personal thank you to the friends, volunteers and council employees who are dedicated to the preservation of Priory Park.

Your continued commitment to help keep this beautiful green space very special is truly appreciated. This achievement is an absolute credit to the energy and enthusiasm we all contribute as one big team.

As I walk round the park today it looks totally cherished and very wintry indeed with some touches of a deep frost.

We have much to do in 2015 and through our continued liaison with the local parks department management team; we aim to resolve some of the outstanding problems.

Here’s to an enjoyable and energetic 2015.

Wishing you all a Very Happy New Year.

Warmest wishes

Mariann Harris
Chair – Friends of Priory Park

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Christmas carols and songs

The event today (12th December) was a great success, though it was cold.

Thanks to the performers - The People's Orchestra, Lauren Wheeler and Priory Primary School Choir, for making this evening's event so enjoyable. Thanks also to the organisers of the event, and all those who helped run the event so smoothly. However, I must also personally thank all those who supported me when I was suffering badly from the cold and breathing problems, including Phil, Chris, Fred, Barbara, Suzie, but also several others.

You can see more photographs by clicking HERE.

An edited video of the event can be accessed HERE - it is quite a large file, and will take a while to load, even though it is at greatly reduced quality and resolution compared with the original recording.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Christmas Carols & Songs in the Park 2014

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Our current Senior Park Ranger

Yesterday I posted a picture of our regular Senior Ranger, Lydia Allt, who is currently on maternity leave. So I'm now posting (rather belatedly!) a picture of Suzie Wolff, who is filling the post while Lydia is away.

Lydia and Ivy

Our regular Senior Park Ranger, Lydia, is on maternity leave at present, and it will be a while before she returns to duty. This is the first time I have seen her since she gave birth, so I thought I would share a picture of her and her daughter.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Recognition from 10 Downing Street

Once again, The Friends of Priory Park were recognised and thanked at this year’s Dudley CVS Volunteer Awards. Their Wednesday Walkers Group was recognised for outstanding commitment to voluntary services. Members of the group and their committee were present at the event and enjoyed a wonderful evening surrounded by other individuals and groups who volunteer their time for good causes. Their Chair commented: “It’s been a brilliant evening getting to know more about what’s going on in other parts of Dudley. I would like to add my personal thanks to all the volunteers who are involved in making a real difference in their communities”

Pictured L – R Jan Nicholls Committee Member and Lead Walker Barbara Thomas Lead Walker Chris Rich Secretary and Lead Walker Mariann Harris Chair

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

New Mission Statement

The Friends of Priory Park Committee recently scheduled time to organise and attend an Away Day to plan and agree their future strategy. Here is their new mission statement:

The Friends of Priory Park will work in partnership with local people, businesses and government to become the Emerald in the Crown of Dudley - Improving the lives of its community and preserving its local heritage through the provision of world class park facilities.

Pictured L - R: Front Cllr Alan Finch, Becky Picken, Mariann Harris, Cynthia Simpson. Back: Gary Turton, Jess Welch, Chris Rich, Jan Nicholls, Niamh Bryan

Mariann Harris

Thursday, November 06, 2014

RHS Level 2 course starts in the pavilion

Wednesday 5th November saw the start of a new course in the pavilion, one which lasts 30 weeks and can lead to an RHS qualification - if we take and pass the exams! The photograph shows the group during a short walk to look at the rose garden - all looking very serious, probably because it was a rather cold afternoon, even though it was sunny!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Point of Light Award for FoPP Secretary Chris Rich

Many congratulations to our FoPP Honorary Secretary, Chris Rich, for winning a Point of Light award in October! The local paper, Dudley News, 22 October 2014, had a big article about this on page 18. This recognition of her work, as a founder-member of FoPP, and many other local activities, is well-deserved. We all owe Chris so much in terms of what she has done for the community.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Support Parks and Green spaces

You might want to visit this web site, and sign the petition - your decision, I'm only making you aware of it!

Support Parks and Green Spaces

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Forthcoming event

Yes, I know it isn't in Priory Park, but at our good friends at the Wrens Nest Community Centre ...

Friday, October 17, 2014

More recognition

Once again, The Friends of Priory Park were recognised and thanked at this year’s Dudley CVS Volunteer Awards. Their Wednesday Walkers Group was recognised for outstanding commitment to voluntary services. Members of the group and their committee were present at the event and enjoyed a wonderful evening surrounded by other individuals and groups who volunteer their time for good causes. Their Chair commented:

“It’s been a brilliant evening getting to know more about what’s going on in other parts of Dudley. I would like to add my personal thanks to all the volunteers who are involved in making a real difference in their communities”

Pictured L – R: Jan Nicholls Committee Member and Lead Walker, Barbara Thomas Lead Walker, Chris Rich Secretary and Lead Walker, Mariann Harris Chair

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Coffee and cake in the Pavilion

Today's event in the park was well-attended, and £80 was raised for Macmillan Cancer Support - many thanks to all those involved.

 I'm not normally a cake-eater myself, but I did give in to temptation and try the rock cakes, which were delicious.

Meanwhile, the autumn colours in the park are superb ...

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Today's event in the park

I've processed a photo I shot at the event today - though maybe OVER-processed would be a more accurate description. I should have posted a more positive version too - I'm sure depression is terrible, but there is so much you can enjoy in life too, if you are fortunate enough to be able to combat the depression. The event was to mark World Mental Health Day. The advice is to talk to your GP, so if depression is a problem for you, please do this.

Forthcoming events ...

Friday, October 03, 2014

Event in the park on Saturday 11th October

Friday, September 19, 2014

Gardening course start date postponed

The start date of the planned gardening course in the pavilion has been put back to 5th November, to allow a bit more time to enrol more participants.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Freshers' Day at Dudley College

FoPP were represented at the event at Dudley College, recruiting volunteers to help us out.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Freshers' Fayre at Dudley College

The Friends of Priory Park were invited to join the Freshers Fayre at Dudley College to promote the valuable work carried out by our committee. The students queued up to find out more about what's going on in the park and about the benefits of volunteering. We signed up fifty four new members! We are hoping to appoint up to five new shadow committee members to provide fresh thinking and ideas to our present committee. Anyone interested in becoming a member or volunteering should text the word 'PARK' to 07790 577655
Pictured L - R Chris Rich Secretary, Gary Turton Treasurer and Mariann Harris Chairperson

Friday, August 29, 2014

Meet Jessica

As you probably know, our regular Senior Park Ranger Lydia is now on maternity leave. Here is Jessica (if you haven't met her already), who will be taking Lydia's place for the next few months.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Back to school crafts - 13:30 Wednesday 27th August

A new event for the school holidays - come and get crafty and make some classroom essentials ready for the start of school in September.

As always arrive early so you can guarantee a place.

For more details please email Jessica, or give her a call on the numbers below.

01384 812474
07557 323171

Dudley-by-the-Sea - in action

The Dudley-by-the Sea event was really humming this afternoon - it seem to have been very popular, and of course there is still one more day to go. The weather has been great too, though a lot colder than only a few days ago. Personally I was also pleased to see the new Black Country flag flying there.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Dudley By The Sea

We may be about as far from the seaside as it is possible to get in the UK, but it's the thought that counts!