Name: Samantha Hall
Role: Corporate Parenting Coordinator
Hello, I am so excited to be writing this blog – I have never done a blog before and don’t really know where to start! So I am going to reminisce – My earliest memory of green space as a young girl stemmed from brook jumping in Woodgate Valley Country Park with my older sister as we made our way to visit grandad who lived in Quinton, this was much fun. We would find the widest part of the stream and take it in turns jumping, I don’t remember falling in so I must have been good! Other adventures were swinging on a rope swing over the brook to jump to other side.
Some parts of the valley were overgrown and we used to get stung walking in the nettles and had to find dock leaves Broad-leaved dock | The Wildlife Trusts to rub on our stings. We would pick the rose bush “buds” (rosehips) and tease each other with the “itching powder” (little irritant hairs) inside the hips by chasing and catching each other and sprinkling the itching power down the back of t shirts and giving a pat on the back (very naughty).
Growing into my teenage years parks played a big part of my life as these were the places we would ‘hang around’ meeting friends, playing games of football or rounders, tree climbing (apple picking) and racing on the BMX track in Senneleys Park.
I remember when Cannon Hill park (late 80’s) used to have the Radio 1 Roadshows, this is where I met Mick Reid (DJ) who was playing tennis and there was always a fair.
Being in this role in the Naturally Birmingham project and thinking about green space has really reminded me what a great time I had growing up and I feel lucky to be able to reconnect. Now I am a regular National Trust visitor and enjoy the outdoors with the family, although we are in unprecedented times it is important to be able to get outdoors I do a regular 20 minute walk each morning before starting my day working from home getting ready for the day ahead.
I hope some of my memories have helped you to think about your years growing up and what green space means to you, parks need people and people need parks.