Yesterday was a great day at Court Lodge. A few weeks ago we placed some ads in the local paper, and in some local Parish magazines, asking for anyone who is interested in helping out at Court Lodge with various projects to get in touch. We had a fantastic response from lots of local people keen to be involved and join us on our restoration journey. These are people who have a bit of time on their hands that they are willing to give to us, and who are interested in gardening, local history, historic buildings and British heritage. We were so overwhelmed by this response that we thought we would organise a volunteers’ tea party so we could meet everyone, and the willing volunteers could see Court Lodge for themselves, and find out what sorts of projects are going on here to get involved with.
17 volunteers came to our tea party, and what a lovely bunch of people they are! It was a fantastic afternoon. Hamish, our head gardener, was here and showed them round the garden to give them an idea of what sorts of gardening projects there are to do. I talked a little bit about the archiving work that I’d love to get some help with. As well as working on the various projects, we also plan to have other occasions like the tea party, to celebrate with, and thank the volunteers as we go along this path.
What struck me was the generosity of people and their genuine interest in this house and the people who have lived in it. These are people who care about houses like Court Lodge because they are an important part of our heritage, and they have lots of relevant experience that they can bring to Court Lodge to help us on our path towards its restoration. It’s a wonderful, mutually beneficial relationship, as we need their help, and they want to be involved. With a community of volunteers like this to help us, bringing a wealth of life experience to our projects, we can’t go far wrong.