Pathways to Freedom

Spent the morning at Olive House which is a residential home right next door to the park.  Janet Eaton, who I’ve met on my perambulations round the park, works there and kindly introduced me to everyone.  I talked in particular to Peter who was telling me Butch Cassidy’s father came from Oswaldtwistle (is this true?!), and Liz who told me all about picking wild Winberries with her Mum on the hill above Stubbylee.  Lyla, (who’s in her 90s), was at first struggling to remember the park, but then a few clicks seemed to happen, and she started to talk about playing tennis and being on the swings  “Eee, now that’s taking me back!” she kept saying.  The sad thing was she kept asking me if I ‘remembered the park’ – as if it was something that was long lost… when actually it was only a hundred yards from where she was sitting.  The staff used to take all the residents over to the park regularly, but then a new extension was added, which closed off the path.  Now the journey’s a bit of an obstacle course for the less mobile residents, and for those in wheelchairs.  But apparently there are plans for a new path.  I hope so.  It seems that as there’s such a beautiful natural resource (and source of memories) on the doorstep, it’s a shame that it’s not being used by the residents all the time.

Then this afternoon I went off to visit Orly in Marsden park, we worked with some students to signpost the park in unusual ways…

And a very talented lass made some temporary graffitti – a bird flying away from a tree -created out of birdseed in a flowerbed.

All of these were Orly’s ideas in practice – I was performing the part of her glamorous assistant.  Tomorrow we plan to take the signpost to Stubbylee and see what my dog-walkers make of it all…

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