Welcome to the Friends of Somersall Park Website

Please click here to vote for us in the Aviva Community Fund

The Friends of Somersall Park Group is a recently established, volunteer run Community group. We aim to bring the local people together to improve, maintain and better utilise this wonderful space.

The park is beautiful but has the potential to offer so much more. With over 400 members and an extended committee of 30 volunteers it really feels the local community is coming together to create positive change.

Our key priorities are
  • To apply for funding grants to replace the tired and dangerous play area with exciting new equipment
  • To work with the local council, police and community to reduce key issues such as littering, dog fouling and antisocial behaviour
  • To arrange events that bring people together and increase utilisation of the park
  • To preserve the natural country park feel and help with necessary general maintenance, for example bins, seating, paths, shrubbery etc
  • To utilise volunteers and encourage the local people to take ownership
  • To act as guardians of the park – safeguarding its natural beauty for generations to come

With this in mind, we are keen to engage with all sections of the community – working with local schools, Churches, youth groups and businesses to create an inclusive and welcoming atmosphere in the park.

Council money is short for projects such as this, but Friends Groups can access money that the local council can’t. We will be able to follow in the footsteps of other hugely successful local Friends Groups and secure grants large and small to use as stepping stones towards achieving our goals.

We welcome new members enthusiastically and are keen to hear from all points of view. We are at all times considerate and conscientious. We are mindful of local residents,familes, dog walkers, children and teens – and all of our plans compliment the natural, country park environment.

on February 21, 2018 20:39
*Please Share Missing* Someones is persistently enticing my mums beautiful cat Lilly with food (not cat food). We know that they are keeping her in as she rarely comes home as she hates the cold and wet and does not eat when she does come home. Someone has previously admitted to feeding and keeping her in as his daughter really likes her. When she does return it is usually without a collar/camera/tracking my mum has put on, or without the message on the collar to ask them to stop feeding her, she has also come home with a different collar. Please share this to anyone you think may live around the Somersal Lane area of Chesterfield. Hopefully they see this and feel ashamed as it is disgusting to steal someones cat that is dearly loved or someone has seen her to let us know that she is safe as again we haven't seen her for 5 days
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Esther-Louise Botham shared a link to the group: Somersall Park Friends.
on February 21, 2018 13:05
Here's a bit of an up date from Alastair Meikle, hope it's useful & answers some questions: Friends of Whitecotes grant mainly from land fill tax which I believe Somersall is outside the area for. Approx 1/3 of the Whitecotes playing field is designated as potential housing (nearest Hazel Drive), see local plan document https://www.chesterfield.gov.uk/media/397234/laa-map-results-passed-stages-1-2a.pdf Their grant funding has been given to them for specific projects, it can't be used elsewhere. The Inkerman have paths and new playground because of Friends group applying for land fill tax grants (£55000 for playground from Viridor, £30000 for paths and drainage from Biffa, £9000 for benches, noticeboard & trees from Lottery). F o The Inkerman got the Inkerman designated as a QE2 Field in Trust to prevent a potential housing development. I'm the chair of Friends of the Inkerman and secretary of Chesterfield Cycle Campaign, the Campaign have been pressing for the path alongside Walton Dam to be resurfaced for years. There are various issues here, the land is owned by Robinsons and is a right of way by concession (they can close it off if they wish). I think, but may be wrong that public access to Robinsons land is only along the Hipper Valley Trail, being on any other bit of their land is technically trespass. The upkeep of the route is down to DCC but depending on a paths status it may be the responsibility of Highways or Countryside services. We have been talking to both to resolve it. Ideally it would be a sealed surface so water runs off but that would need the approval of Robinson's. We're talking about a considerable amount of money here £100000+ for a sealed surface which would need to come out of Highways or Countryside's annual budget. There are often grants and funding to build something but how it will be maintained and from what budget can be a sticking point. This is partly why the extension of the cycle route to Holymoorside is taking so long. Also, Inkerman paths were just crushed stone and not very well laid so 3 years later they are pooling water and , this loosens the surface and dips develop deteriorating the path further so they need maintenance which there isn't the budget for. The best (more expensive) non sealed surface is Top Trek (as laid on the Monsal Trail). DCC Highways who are responsible for much of the cycle network in Chesterfield try to lay paths with tarmac (Stonegravels Way & Station link for example) and this is now their standard policy. Needs little maintenance and much more cost effective and a cleaner sustainable transport commuter route. DCC Countryside think more about leisure routes and go for a non sealed surface which the route to Holymoorside will be - short sighted in my opinion.
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on February 21, 2018 12:56
What a shame we were unsuccessful with the Aviva bid after all the effort so many put in. I'm not sure how much is currently in the fund but, if there is enough, would it be an option to use the money raised so far and upgrade the play area in its current location? Maybe the trees on the riverside could be cut right back or down to make the surface safe from leaves and let in more sunshine and the play area could be revamped or renewed. I know its a lot less than what was planned but is it worth considering? One advantage would be that it would still be within site of local residents so less likely to be vandalised.
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on February 20, 2018 10:47
Anybody know why all the trees have been cut down and used to block access to the river banks? Looks a mess plus they’ve used loads of barbed wire!
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