A hands-on day of games, greening, safe place making and art
Friday 15th October 11am-4pm at Camelon Juniors Football Ground Car Park
The Camelon Juniors Football Club Car Park and its immediate environs have historically been viewed as a problematic area for the local community with a longstanding high incidence of anti-social behaviour . The situation was exacerbated last year when a fire badly damaged a container within the football ground which was being used as a temporary changing room facility due to the COVID pandemic. This concern for the location and the security of the football club were consistent themes that were raised through the local community safety consultations that took place throughout 2020 and early 2021, and in response to these specific community safety concerns a multi-agency group was convened by Falkirk Council to look at strategic solutions for both the security of the football club and improving the location for the benefit of the wider community. The local community safety strategy advocates a partnership approach with a focus upon community-based solutions and in this context, it was advocated that: a community engagement and development process involving all the local stakeholders was required as this would be the most effective way of transforming the space from being a negative location into a community asset
The Our Place Camelon & Tamfourhill Community Safety Engager therefore began an engagement process with the key stakeholders.
A tenants survey took place in Jan/Feb 2021 which confirmed that local tenants would like to see the area transformed through creative and green projects. The football club were supportive of this approach and in particular were keen to see the perimeter wall of the Football ground upgraded in a creative way and to encourage the wider community to participate with that process.
Throughout May/July 2021 further audits of the spaces and consultations with stakeholders and local tenants took place to collect views and ideas as to how that location could be reimagined, redeveloped, and better used. This included children’s street games taking place on the car park and an ongoing commitment from the Tidy, clean and Green Group and the Forth Valley Recovery Community to keep the area cleared of litter and dog mess and further support form Falkirk Council has seen the installation of temporary CCTV and the clearance of the overgrown area next to the canal towpath.
The sustainable long-term solution to this area will necessitate a collaborative approach and with the involvement and commitment of the Camelon Arts Project, along with Our Place Camelon & Tamfourhill, The Tidy, Clean & Green Group and community artist Mark Bleakley’s All Games Allowed Project, the next phase of this engagement process will take place on Friday 15th October when there will be the Gather & Play Community Safety Event: This will involve a day of drop-in creative workshops and games, cleaning and greening, and temporary interventions at Camelon Junior’s car park .This is a bit of a taste and try day where local people can come and experience some of the ideas that have already been suggested to improve the car park and its surrounding area: The drop-in event will run from 11am – 4pm and will include the following workshops from Camelon Arts:
- All Games Allowed with Mark Bleakley
- Tote bag printing with Alice Dansey-Wright
- Mural painting workshop based upon the football grounds perimeter wall with Gregor Horne & Theo Christy (Gallery Malmo)
- A temporary exhibition of Canal College Artists’ sign paintings
- The launch of our Camelon and Tamfourhill calendar.
- The Tidy, Clean & Green Community Group will host their first pop up park with children’s games, and this will provide an opportunity for families and children to experience what a safe play area and family social space might be like at that location.
- There will be food and drink provided free of charge,
- A great prize can be won for a day out at the Falkirk Wheel.
Most importantly the Event will provide opportunities for further discussions and engagement to take place with the community safety engager, Camelon Arts , the supporting artists, the Tidy, Clean and Green Group and with Falkirk Council. The longer-term aim is to establish a community agreed plan which will contribute to making this area safer, and to also listen to peoples wider aspirations for their neighbourhood, hopefully the Gather & Play approach will inspire more local people to get directly involved with that community development process.