UPDATE 39 : 3/9/01 'OPEN PRAISE'
Darwin Gardens has reached third place in Yorkshire in Bloom's 'Millennium Project' category, achieving 176 points against the joint winners' 178 (out of a possible 200) - a great tribute to the hard work of our volunteers plus all the individuals and organisations who have supported the project. VERY WELL DONE! (and let's try for even better next year!)
Judges of the 'Town' category for Yorkshire in Bloom also praised the Millennium Green as "quite outstanding ....designed to fit the chosen location with sustainability very much in mind".
And perhaps the best accolade of all, an 'Ilkley resident of many years' has written to us: "Congratulations on the Darwin Gardens. When plans for it were first discussed, I must admit to being unsure - but I am now the first to admit I was wrong. The area is quite delightful - we take all our visitors there - and our children love it." Thank you very much!
We must also thank Bradford Council, whose Woodlands management staff have recently installed two sturdy new benches near the ghyll, sited to take advantage of splendid views up to White Wells or down to the recently cleared watercourse. They have also repaired one of the bridges across the ghyll, and cleared some decayed trees near the top of the site, an area which we intend to landscape over the coming year. Volunteers are continuing to control bracken in selected areas, including the Millennial Vision belvedere, to maintain attractive views over the ghyll.
The latest feature, sited below the picnic bench area, is a 'Human Sundial' , which has been officially inaugurated by Anne Glover of the Countryside Agency. She visited the Millennium Green also to attend the laying of the Agency's feature flagstone in the Millennium Maze.
The sundial is composed of a circular boulder, carved by 'Artist in Stone' Darren Yeadon to suggest either a millstone being cut from a rock outcrop (to highlight the historic link with the adjacent Mill Gill and Ilkley's old mill, which once stood nearby below the Green) - or the sun emerging from behind clouds, with its rays represented by the hour markers!
To use the dial, you must stand in the centre of the stone, so that your shadow is cast over the markers: this simple device is set to show British Summer Time (but in Roman numerals of course!) and will be accurate throughout the summer months. The glorious Bank Holiday weather has seen it much used, but even in winter it will still be a 'fundial' for all to enjoy!
Remember that this website now includes a new picture gallery and links to other sites of related interest, helping to make Darwin Gardens Millennium Green a place for all seasons, indoors as well as out!
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