It’s open, and it’s changing lives already! We had the honour of opening the facility at our beloved Longdown Activity Farm in Ashurst, on 12 March, which, rather fittingly, was Disabled Access Day.
Hadley cut the ribbon, alongside Sam Burnage, aged 9.
For those who have not been following the progress of the facility, it’s been a labour of love for all concerned. Hadley’s family, friends and friends of the farm have all played a huge role, from helping us to shovel manure to raise funds for the facility, to physically painting and building it!
There are so many people to thank, including everyone who has bought a raffle ticket (or ten!), the member of the Dung Heap Challenge Teams and their families and friends who sponsored them, Storage Onside Solutions in Marchwood for providing the container free of charge, The Saxon Inn in Calmore for raising over £1800 towards the cost through various events, Crown Paint in Millbrook for providing all the paint, brushes and equipment we needed, the plumber, builders and electricians for all going above and beyond, providing work free of charge wherever possible…
…Hadley’s grandparents and other family members, for all picking up brushes and painting, helping with prizes and selling tickets for raffles like their lives depended on it, my brother for making the bespoke door for the unit and making sure it was ready in time and Pete, my step-dad and Hadley’s grandad, for working non-stop to convert the container and making it into an incredible room as well as fixing every problem we came up against in his usual ‘laid back, nothing is too much trouble’ style. To the lovely Nina Lazarski, for pulling off a wonderful piece of art for the inside at such short notice (and for the future murals she is going to paint), Kelvin at Clos-o-mat for supplying the kit inside and sharing in the sleepless nights and worry of getting this finished in time and of course Bryan and Dawn the owners of the farm, for their commitment and support of this project, despite the huge financial investment. Everyone has been incredible and the result is something very special that will always be the very first Changing Places facility that I personally helped to create. There are so many more people I need to add too that have donated anonymously or supplied prizes, provided advice and asked favours, the list is endless and you will always be remembered.
The responses on the Longdown Activity Farm Facebook page say it all. I’ve never seen so many people say thank you for a toilet! And to read about families who can now attend the farm who previously were unable to answers all of my prayers and just confirms why we do this.
Thank you Longdown Activity Farm for leading the way and showing others exactly how it is done!