Just in time for spring, a new storytelling space has been unveiled in Haverhill’s East Town Park, as part of the National Literacy Trust’s campaign to get families enjoying stories together.
Get Suffolk Reading and Greener Growth launched their first Haverhill storytelling chair together on Saturday 11 March to coincide with the creation of a new story for East Town Park’s digital story trail. Funding totalling £1400 was provided by West Suffolk councillors Tony Brown, Jason Crooks and Pat Hanlon out of their locality budgets.
The chair forms part of a storytelling circle so groups can gather for learning activities. Families following the digital story trail will discover this addition to the park as a surprise at the end of their adventure.
This storytelling space in East Town Park is somewhere families, schools and local organisations can come together and enjoy the magic of stories in a natural environment.
This storytelling space in East Town Park is somewhere families, schools and local organisations can come together and enjoy the magic of stories in a natural environment. We know outdoor learning boosts confidence and improves wellbeing for young people. Creating this space will bring opportunities for children, parents, carers and teachers to share new stories and experiences.Suzanne Stevenson, Haverhill Project Manager for Get Suffolk Reading
Cllr Brown, who represents the Haverhill South East ward, Cllr Crooks, who represents the Haverhill South ward, and Cllr Hanlon, who represents Haverhill East, said: “This superb community initiative is designed to encourage families to get out and explore our wonderful park together.
"Through this, families will not only be helping their health and wellbeing, but also their reading skills, which is fantastic not just for their education, but also as a way of spending time together.
"We are delighted to support this initiative as its springs further into action and we are sure it will be very popular especially when the weather warms up.”
The digital story trail was first installed at East Town Park in October 2022.
Eight QR codes are in place around the popular park; scanning these in order reveals a story that is changed throughout the year. There are also activities to encourage conversation and creativity as families move along the route.
With the help of Haverhill Literacy Champions a new story has been created to celebrate the arrival of the storytelling space.