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Putting Up the Parachute : A New Chapter for Our Site

There’s a unique kind of magic that comes with transforming a space, watching it evolve from a tangled mess of brambles into a welcoming haven. Recently, we experienced this firsthand as we installed our new parachute shelter on the site, a project that was as much about teamwork and community as it was about the physical labor.

Our site had long been a blank canvas, a wild area waiting for a touch of creativity and vision. The idea of the parachute —a floating, ethereal shelter made from silk—was born out of a desire to create a space that was both functional and beautiful. We envisioned a place where people could gather, relax, and feel connected to nature.

The first step was to clear the brambles. Armed with gloves and shears, we set to work. It was tough going at times, with the stubborn plants fighting back, but there was a collective energy driving us forward. Each cleared patch of ground was a small victory, and by the end of the day, we could already see the future taking shape.

One of the standout moments of this project was the incredible help we received from Chris. Not only did he bring an infectious enthusiasm to the task, but he also took on the challenge of climbing the trees. With skill and determination, he secured a sturdy rope high up in the branches, providing the essential anchor for our parashoot. Watching him work, it was clear that his efforts were laying the foundation for something special.

With the rope in place, it was time to set up the parachute. As we unfurled the silk, it caught the breeze and floated in the air, a delicate dance that hinted at the beauty to come. We carefully suspended the fabric from the rope, adjusting and readjusting until it hung just right. The silk moved gently with the wind, creating a sense of movement and life.

As the parachute took shape, something remarkable happened. The leaves of the surrounding trees began to project intricate, shifting patterns onto the silk. It was as if nature itself was collaborating with us, adding its own artistry to our creation. The interplay of light and shadow brought the shelter to life in a way we hadn’t fully anticipated, and it was truly mesmerising.

Stepping back to admire our work, a deep sense of satisfaction washed over us. The parachute wasn’t just a shelter; it was a symbol of what we could achieve together. The site, once overrun with brambles and wild growth, had been transformed into a space of beauty and possibility.

Looking at the parachute, we could see the future of the site. It was a place that invited people to pause, to gather, and to appreciate the simple, profound beauty of nature. And it was a testament to the power of collaboration and vision.

We would like to extend a special thank you to the Forest of Dean District Council for their generous funding, which made it possible for us to acquire this beautiful piece of kit. Their support has been instrumental in bringing our vision to life, and we are incredibly grateful.

This project is just the beginning. With the parachute in place, we’re already dreaming up new ways to enhance and utilise the site. There’s a sense of excitement about what lyes ahead, fuelled by the success of our first major undertaking.

We’re thrilled to announce that next month we will be running our new Forest Play sessions on Thursday mornings, with dates to be confirmed soon. These sessions will provide a wonderful opportunity for children and adults alike to explore and enjoy our transformed space.

As we move forward, we’re committed to maintaining the spirit of teamwork and creativity that made the parachute possible. There are more brambles to clear, more spaces to transform, and more opportunities to create something beautiful.

In the end, putting up the parachute was about more than just creating a shelter. It was about building a community, embracing a shared vision, and celebrating the joy of making something together. And that’s a journey we’re excited to continue.

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