Category Archives: Get involved

An open invitation to all Burbage clubs and groups

In 2017 the 50th anniversary of the original ‘summer of love’ in 1967 will be celebrated around the world, and our Summer of Love 50 programme is a series of free community arts events in Burbage.

This is an open invitation to all Burbage groups, clubs, schools, care homes, churches, charities etc to collaborate and share ideas for adding a hippy/flower-power flavour to our parish. We will organise events, displays and exhibitions continually from 1 April to 30 September.

Some examples of sharing might be…

* give one of your meetings or group outings a hippy theme just for fun – perhaps with 60s music playing

* take part as a group in one of our events – for example you could have a kite-making session and bring the kites to the KiteFest in August

* we could come to one of your meetings in April for a Flowers in the Rain welly boot paint and plant

* your group could form a hippy flashmob or street choir

* if you have a public space or communal area you could host a display from our travelling art and craft exhibition

Or you might have your own plans and we could share ideas or collaborate in other ways. We are especially keen to extend coverage to all corners of Burbage Parish.

We’re open to all suggestions as long as they are positive and generally enhance our community and environment (so for example no loud fireworks, balloon releases or sky lanterns).

We’ll be increasing our media presence from January and we expect to be featured in at least one local press article every month from March to October, and to be on local radio at least once during the summer.

If you’re interested please email me. If you are in a group which has a committee please let them know about this invitation.

Burbage plans for Summer of Love 50

The Burbage Summer of Love 50 programme Next year’s Summer of Love 50 programme is looking good!

We had a gathering of interested parties recently and firmed up our plans for an exciting series of events from April to September…

April: Flowers in the Rain

Decorated and planted welly boots and other containers around Burbage, filled with spring flowers. Anyone can take part and there will be painting and planting parties for schools, groups and the public during April.

May: A Groovy Kind of Love

Reusing and upcycling old vinyl records to make art displays, sculptures, clocks and other crafty items. We’ll also host an evening of 60s music.

June: Penny Lane Treasure Hunt

A fun family treasure hunt around Burbage finding clues and exploring our lanes and jitties. We’ll link this with a geocaching trail including the Jitty Bug Walk and wildlife areas as a permanent asset for the people of Burbage.

July: Strawberry Fields Hippy Picnic

A free family picnic in a Burbage open space. Bring goodies to eat and share, and a musical instrument if you have one. Dress optional.

August: Diamonds in the Sky KiteFest

Make a flower-power themed kite (or buy one and decorate it) to bring to a kite-flying day. We’ll organise kite-making workshops and provide plans if you want to make your own.

September: Blackberry Way Forage Walk

Guided walks to find blackberries and other edible fruit, nuts, berries and plants.

Kids’ Art and Craft Exhibition

During the summer we will also organise a travelling art and craft exhibition to showcase children’s creativity in various venues around Burbage.

Summer Yarnbomb

The Burbage Yarnbomb Project will organise a summer yarnbomb with a hippy-era flavour bringing colourful flower power all over Burbage.

These events are in addition to our usual activities so we’ll have something for everyone from January to December. Everything we do is free but donations are always welcome and there may be a small charge for materials for some activities.

The aims of Summer of Love 50 are:

1. Have fun.

2. Reaffirm the power of love, hope and optimism.

3. Save the world.

All these events will happen in Burbage but everyone is welcome to join in, and if anyone wants to organise similar hippy/flower power themed events in other areas we’ll be delighted to share ideas.

We need lots more people to help make all this happen so please let us know if you’re interested 🙂

Make a star for the Burbage Nativity Walk 2016

Crocheted stars for Burbage Nativity WalkBurbage yarnbombers are making a trail of stars for the route of the Nativity Walk in the village on Sunday 4 December.

If you can knit or crochet why not make a star – any colour, size or shape will be just right. This crochet pattern is nice and simple! Please bring your stars to 8 Featherston Drive by Saturday 26 November.

20161112_072401The Nativity Walk is organised by Burbage Methodist Church and Burbage Churches Together. Places are limited and booking is essential. You can book your place on Facebook or email


Poppy yarnbombing 2016

20161103_185439We’re inviting you to knit or crochet poppies to be placed around Burbage from Sunday 6 November until Remembrance Day, Sunday 13 November.

Please either bring your poppies to me at 8 Featherston Drive or put them up in your own area.

Some patterns

Feel free to use whatever pattern you like, but here are some suggestions:

59-61-poppies This is the popular Woman’s Own pattern with knitted and crochet versions .

poppy-patterns A simple one-piece pattern for a knitted curly  poppy.

An invitation to Burbage shops and businesses

We are looking for Burbage shops and businesses to help us run an exciting 6-month programme of free fun events in 2017 on the theme of ‘Summer of Love 50’. There will be community art, gardening, craft, walks and workshops for everyone, all in Burbage and all free.

These are some ways you could be part of it:

  • providing space for a workshop
  • hosting a community art window display
  • adopting a spring or summer planted container
  • sponsoring an event
  • providing a space for a community choir or poetry performance

Our aim is “to celebrate our community and our creative spirit” so we encourage a high level of hands-on involvement from as many people as possible.

If you would like to support us or take part in our events please email


An invitation to all Burbage groups and clubs

We are planning an exciting 6-month programme of free fun events next year on the theme of ‘Summer of Love 50’. There will be community art, gardening, craft, walks and workshops for everyone, all in Burbage and all free.

We would like to collaborate with other groups such as cubs, guides, playgroups, church groups, WI or anyone else who would like to get involved.

Our aim is “to celebrate our community and our creative spirit” so we encourage a high level of hands-on involvement from as many people as possible.

If your group would like to be part of next year’s events please email

25 Burbage people needed!

I’m looking for another 25 Burbage residents to work with me to make Freestyle Burbage more successful in 2017.

The aim of Freestyle Burbage is “to celebrate our community and our creative spirit“. We organise events, activities and groups all over the parish of Burbage.

Many people have contributed to our events but we need more people to play an active part, to think of ideas, to get sponsorship, to publicise events, to run events, to start groups and take on long-term projects like book exchange boxes and toy libraries.

I have taken on much of the work for what we have done so far but I will not be putting as much time into it after this year, so if we don’t get more people actively involved I don’t think Freestyle Burbage will continue.

Bug hunting in Burbage
Bug hunting in Burbage
Yarnbomb at St Catherine's Church Burbage
Yarnbomb at St Catherine’s Church Burbage

The events/projects we have organised this year have been:

  • Guerrilla poetry posters
  • Burbage Village litter pick
  • Love Burbage yarnbombing
  • Dawn Chorus Walk
  • Burbage Book Exchange free library
  • Spring plant swap
  • Sunflower Guerrilla Gardening
  • Jitty Bug Walk (twice)

And planned for the rest of this year…

  • Summer toy library
  • Twilight/bat walk in August
  • Autumn plant swap in October

Next year I would like to do even more, but I need more people like you to help. As well as our regular events I would like to run a series of activities on the theme of “Summer of Love 50” to “reaffirm the power of love, hope and optimism”. Some initial ideas are:

  • ‘Flowers in the Rain’ plant tubs in early spring
  • ‘Penny Lane’ jitty treasure hunt
  • ‘Strawberry Fields’ summer picnic
  • In the Sky with Diamonds’ kite workshop and festival
  • ‘Blackberry Way’ forage walk
  • ‘Morning Dew’ cobweb walk in autumn

We don’t have a committee or formal meetings, we just get on and make stuff happen in Burbage. If you’re interested in this or you have other ideas, and you want to be a part of the Freestyle Burbage project, please email

Wildlife champions needed for the Blooming Burbage project

I would like to connect with other Burbage people who are interested in wildlife-friendly gardening and/or who want to help make Burbage a haven for wildlife.

As well as turning my own garden into a pesticide-free wildlife-friendly zone I have persuaded Burbage Parish Council to join the Hedgehog Awareness Scheme and to try leaving un-mown strips in some parks, and they have promised that they don’t use any neonicotinoids on their land.

I have also asked the Environment Agency to survey Sketchley Brook to see what can be done to reverse the silting up and accumulation of debris and bankside growth, and I hope we can organise a clear up party.

Some suggestions of other things we can do are:

  • manage some or all of our own gardens as wildlife-friendly areas
  • tell our friends and neighbours what we are doing
  • put pictures and stories about our gardens on social media
  • write to local papers about the need to protect wildlife
  • write/email/tweet to Burbage Parish Council to praise them for their positive actions
  • write/email/tweet to Burbage Parish Council to complain about their negative actions (like obsessive edge-to-edge mowing in parks, destruction of hedgerows, and weedkiller spraying, all in the name of ‘neatness’)
  • use the parish council’s ‘suggestions box’ to suggest improvements
  • write/email/tweet to Royal Mail to complain about the rubber bands their posties drop (because they kill and injure hedgehogs and other wildlife)
  • go out and pick up litter, especially harmful stuff like rubber bands, hair bands, four-pack plastic loops, bottles, ring pulls and cans
  • ask the candidates for the Burbage Parish Council election in July what they will do to protect our wildlife and its habitats

If you are a wildlife champion and you want to be part of the initiative which makes Burbage the leading parish in Leicestershire for biodiversity please email 🙂

Find us on Twitter: @BloomingBurbij
And on Facebook: Blooming Burbage Wildlife Friendly Gardening

Community project coordinators wanted

Could you organise a Freestyle Burbage activity?

Freestyle Burbage was set up to “celebrate our community and our creative spirit” and we organise free or low-cost events in Burbage.

We have achieved a lot this year but we can only keep the project going if more people get involved and help. So we are asking for coordinators to organise a whole range of activities and events such as…

Small one-off events like:
* a litter pick
* a walk

Bigger, more involved events like:
* a treasure hunt
* a plant swap

Ongoing projects like:
* a book swap box
* a series of yarn bombs

Freestyle Burbage is open to everyone, regardless of age, gender, mobility or any other consideration. It would help if you live in Burbage but it’s not necessary. You need to share the Freestyle Burbage belief that all members of our community can contribute, and that community involvement is the most important measure of success.

Coordinators will find volunteers to carry out tasks, make contacts with other local groups and projects, publicise events and generally help make Freestyle Burbage events successful. These are voluntary roles but out of pocket expenses will be reimbursed.

Most of our publicity so far has been online and it will help if you use social media, but we also need to do a lot more to spread the word through personal contacts, posters, leaflets and local media.

We have no committee and no management structure. We are not recognised or supported by the parish or borough council and we don’t receive any grant funding, so we don’t have to dance to anyone’s tune.

If you would like to help, or to talk about it, please email or ask questions here.

Our October 2015 newsletter is out!

IMG_20151005_163622Our latest newsletter is ready to view, with news and pictures from the plant swap, the Harvest Moon Watch, and the Sunflower Challenge.

There are also details of our free October photography competition and Burbage Yarnbomb Project, our improved website and the accounts for September.

Download the newsletter from

If you would like to receive our newsletter by email every month please email

I hope to start producing the newsletter in other languages this month, and I would like to hear from anyone who would be willing to translate it into Polish or other languages.