From education to employment

The Green Team and Aspire support Grafham Water project

The latest commission for the Cambridge Regional College Green Team and Aspire group of learners is a project to build a willow fence at Grafham Water as part of a re-purposing exercise to utilise a largely unused green space, increasing capacity for residential visits at the centre. 

In January, a group of CRC adult learners and their leaders Andrew Fountain and Gordon Baines – from the Supported Learning department – started work preparing the materials required for the project. With a brief of creating a boundary fence over 100 feet in length, the team had to cut, prepare, and transport over 4 tonnes of willow to Grafham Water ready for construction in February. The team will spend the next five weeks weaving from one end of the fence to the other before securing the willow and working their way back again. A detailed and focussed method which requires a great deal of attention to ensure high standards.

Grafham Water Centre Marketing and Sales Officer, Alison Baines said, “The willow fence will mark the boundary of our new tented village. The tented village will increase the capacity of Grafham Water Centre, allowing us to welcome even more young people across Cambridgeshire & Peterborough and meet our commitment to supporting young people to engage in the great outdoors and experience outdoor learning. We are hugely grateful to the Green Team and Aspire group for their support and hard work in moving this construction project along quickly so that we are ready to welcome our first groups around Easter time.”

The Green Team and Aspire are made up of approximately 20 adult learners with a range of additional needs. Working in partnership with Grafham Water, the project will provide the opportunity for learners with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities to develop their skill set and employability skills, while supporting their local community. The team also have ongoing projects with Hinchingbrooke Country Park and Anglesey Abbey. 

Director for Supported Learning, Jeremy Lloyd said, “This is one of the biggest single projects we have worked on. It is not simply a case of installing the fence. The team have spent weeks cutting down enough willow to meet the brief and they will now spend a further five weeks weaving the willow to create a boundary fence that is 4ft high and over 100 feet long. We are extremely proud of the commitment the team are showing in this endeavour, which promotes the importance of how adults with learning disabilities contribute to their local communities.”

Find out more about about Supported Learning at Cambridge Regional College.

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