Our Mission To create a family-centred community space in a natural environment to foster a connection with nature, improve wellbeing and share skills and knowledge.
To achieve our mission, we will focus on the following key areas:
Aims and Objectives
1) Develop and nurture a community of families who share our values
Create a supportive network of local businesses and families to strengthen the connections within our community both online and in person by identifying and securing a site where we can host workshops, events and social gatherings.
Host and run two Green Fairs in Bury St Edmunds each year providing an opportunity for eco-friendly local businesses and community projects to share their knowledge and skills and to raise awareness of sustainable and low-impact choices. The events will introduce community groups and conservation charities to the public, developing a stronger relationship within the community, inspiring them to reconnect with nature and the environment.
Offer sessions and workshops with a focus on outdoor education and nature connection for wellbeing in order to promote sustainable and environmentally friendly lifestyle choices.
Encourage a sense of pride in our town and in the wider region by engaging with the local community and involving them in our work.
2) To create a wellbeing and educational space in a natural environment
Invite members and volunteers to assist in the creation of shelters for wellbeing and education.
Collaborate with a variety of providers of wellbeing and outdoor education sessions and workshops to create a balanced timetable throughout the year for a wide selection of ages and abilities.
3) To find and regenerate an area of land
Identify suitable sites within a radius of ten-fifteen miles around Bury St Edmunds which would fit with the vision
Approach land owners, the council and estate agents to negotiate potential lease or purchase of land
Obtain necessary planning permission and surveys required for building on the land
Liaise with local conservation and land management specialists regarding the regeneration and rewilding of the site. Work in partnership with relevant authorities.
Invite members of the community to volunteer their time to regenerate the land and learn conservation skills.
4) To build and manage an eco community centre
Work with local experts in natural and eco-friendly building techniques to design buildings which are suitable for the site and will fit in with the vision.
Involve members of the community in the building of the site with working parties and training workshops.
Provide opportunities for work experience, volunteers and contract work during building and in the management and running of the centre.
Develop and manage a café or kiosk serving organic locally grown and responsibly sourced produce.
Welcome to The Hive! 🐝
My name is Steph, I come from Bury St Edmunds in West Suffolk. I am a home-educating mum to our seven-year-old daughter, a Forest School Leader, a music teacher, and the facilitator of various community groups. I am really proud to be sharing my vision for this exciting community project with you! This project will bring together the key elements of the other organisations I run, which are families and communities, nature, wellbeing and education. As we get this project off the ground, I will be using the website and facebook page to gather support, both financially, and physically. Please keep reading to find out more about my vision.
The plan is to find a piece of wooded land with enough space to create a family-friendly, community-run and eco-friendly centre. It would focus on Connection, Community and the Environment as a way of bringing families and communities together. We will be using locally and sustainably sourced natural materials where possible, and members of our own local community to help us design and build our dream space.
For now, it is just the start of a very exciting project. Hopefully it will become reality soon. I have an amazing team working with me to run the organisation, as well as support from the council, but we will rely on volunteers, sponsors and moral support to see this through! If you can help us in any way, please get in touch!
We would hope to find some land that requires some regeneration or rewilding and could obtain planning permission for an eco-friendly building or set of buildings. The following would be included in an ideal outcome:
Community-run centre hosting activities, groups and workshops with a focus on nature, wellbeing and education. Eco-friendly building(s) – renewable and sustainable energy source, low impact, using local tradespeople and workmanship, locally-sourced materials, eco-friendly toilets, regeneration of the land. The centre would be available for use by a wide variety of members of the community, individuals and groups. Shelters and buildings to include space for all the following:
Outdoor space for forest school, outdoor learning, nature therapy, arts and crafts and conservation projects. This would include a covered area with natural seating.
Community garden providing organically grown produce to sell in the café and shop
Eco-friendly shop selling eco-friendly toys, books, clothes, slings, cloth nappies, hygiene products, second-hand clothing and books and locally-made crafts and gifts.
Eco-friendly café serving hot and cold drinks, wholefoods, vegetarian and vegan options, gluten and dairy-free options, locally grown produce.
Therapy rooms to hire (indoor and outdoor) to local practitioners including massage, aromatherapy, counselling, acupuncture and reflexology, and for use by healthcare practitioners eg midwives, health visitors. Larger space for group use – baby and toddler classes, dance classes, yoga etc.
Baby sensory space, toddler-friendly play area with eco-friendly toys and books, comfortable seating for breastfeeding mums, comfortable workspace for working parents to use. Classroom area for use by education groups.
Library – books, clothes, slings, nappies etc available to borrow
The organisation will be developed, managed and run by local people for local people.