From a bug-huntingly brilliant nature survey in Kimberley Park to a cornucopia of creativity to celebrate Paint the Town Yellow Day, students from the University of Exeter and Falmouth University will be out in force during the next few weeks lending their support to the town’s Spring Festival, which is funded and organised by Falmouth’s Business Improvement District (BID).
The Paint the Town Yellow Day brings together students of Art and Design from Falmouth University with pupils from all of our local schools. Prior to the event there will be workshops at which students and pupils will design and make Spring-themed creations. They will then take to the streets on Thursday 14 March and install their colourful artwork in more than 20 of Falmouth’s local shops and businesses to kickstart the Spring Festival.
“This is a really exciting project for us,” said Sam Hudspith, Falmouth University’s UK Recruitment & Outreach Coordinator. “It provides a great opportunity for our students to gain valuable experience of working with school pupils and it’s a fun and creative way for the schools to interact with the University. The day itself will be great – bright and colourful – a perfect way to launch the Spring Festival.”
On Sunday 24 March, between 12 noon and 4pm, students from the University of Exeter and members of the student-led EcoSoc will be encouraging local families to pond-dip, bird-watch and bug-hunt as part of Party in the Park – a celebration of Kimberley Park’s fun new space for outdoor play.
Students will also be on hand to show visitors how to make dragonflies out of clothes pegs, butterfly masks to colour in and bird feeders from pinecones, peanut butter and seeds.
“The day will provide a great opportunity for all age groups to join us for bird and bug walks around this beautiful park, as well as pond-dipping, and then identify what we have found afterwards with the help of our microscopes and ID books,” explains Hannah Fitzjohn, a second-year student from the University of Exeter’s BSc in Zoology who has helped to coordinate this aspect of the event. “It is always fun to share a voyage of discovery and see how many species we can find, and we hope to have lots of helpers to catalogue Kimberley Park’s rich biodiversity on the day.”
Another group of students – from the Falmouth & Exeter Students’ Union Community Action team – will also be doing their bit and joining in Falmouth’s Spring Clean Day on Saturday 9 March.
“This is a great opportunity for our many community-spirited students to join local people in a day of clearing rubbish and seaweed from Castle, Gyllyngvase and Swanpool beaches,” says Mark Nunns, FXU’s Community Action Coordinator. “Throughout the year, our willing band of student volunteers participates in community arts initiatives, environmental projects and conservation volunteering, adult social care and charity fundraising activities. This not only helps them to encounter new challenges and make new friends, but also to learn key skills that will help them in their future careers.”
“I’m delighted by the involvement of students from Falmouth University and the University of Exeter in this year’s Spring Festival,” added Richard Wilcox, Falmouth BID Manager. “The event has a strong community ethos and it’s terrific that a number of organisations and individuals have supported its development since it began. The enthusiasm of students and staff to be involved in the Paint the Town Yellow Day during the first Spring Festival four years ago has been a key factor in the success of that activity, and it is good news that their participation has expanded to include Party in the Park and Falmouth’s Spring Clean Day in 2013.”
The University of Exeter and Falmouth University share and jointly manage the Penryn Campus as Cornwall’s Higher Education hub in an arrangement that is unique in the UK.
Students from FXU (Falmouth & Exeter Students’ Union), litter pickers at the ready during a Hayle Estuary clean in association with the RSPB.