Garner’s Goes Bananas
Calling all adventurers!
Scouting needs your help to update a fantastic local youth resource. For over 40 years, Garner’s Field campsite has given young people lifelong memories of outdoor fun and adventure – and now it needs your support to help future generations to enjoy our local countryside.
What is Garner’s Field?
This eight-acre activity centre, just outside Farnham, is home to some of the best youth resources in Surrey, with current facilities including an adventure trail, climbing tower, campsite and riverside access. Since the mid-1970s, generations of Scout Groups, youth organisations and Duke of Edinburgh Award parties have used Garner’s Field for camping and a vast array of outdoor experiences including canoeing, archery and forest skills.
In 1976 Farnham Scout Council under the direction of then District Commissioner Eric Garner (for whom the site is named) scraped together the substantial sum of £3,000 needed to purchase the land from the former owner.
A water supply, rickety toilet block and tree planting commenced soon after purchase with the subsequent addition of a combined Hall and Activity Centre – all paving the way for many happy years of outdoor Scouting, youthful fun and happy memories.
Garner’s Field – Today
The original toilet block has been rebuilt and an Adventure Trail and Climbing Tower added. Garner’s Field today caters for youth groups and welcomes Scouts, Guides and school groups from all over the South of England. The campsite averages 3000 camping nights per year as well as day and evening use by local groups and Duke of Edinburgh (D of E) Award members – Garner’s Field has even been used as a film site as part of a ‘fly on the wall’ TV series!
The campsite and its facilities are maintained by a group of volunteers who freely give up their time to keep the site and its facilities in pristine order.
Why are we Going Bananas?
The activity centre requires extending and upgrading to meet ever-increasing demand, and Farnham Scouts are seeking local support to help fund the project. Planning permission has been granted to include:
Provision of a first aid/leaders/quiet room in the new extension plus adjacent easy clean toilets and a disabled shower room/toilet.
A new access and coats storage area to free up space in the main hall and give us a weather lobby.
The current kitchen comprises the original domestic units and fittings which struggle to cope with the larger events we now host. Intention is to re-arrange the layout and install a user-friendly catering style kitchen with easy clean hygienic floor and wall coverings.
Provide a new table and chair store utilising freed up space and thereby provide additional hall space for users.
Our campsite water supply comes from a bore hole which we share with Surrey West Guides who own the adjacent campsite. To supplement our sometimes limited water supply we propose to install a ‘rainwater harvesting’ system. By collecting rainwater from the Activity Centre roof it will be used via a storage tank and pumping system to flush the toilets in both the existing toilet block and new extension.
Where we are now?
We have detailed drawings and all the necessary local authority consents to carry out the work. We have likely costings from our Quantity Surveyor with the work divided into two phases-
Phase 1. To build and fit out the extension to the existing Activity Centre and install the rainwater harvesting system: £75,000 plus VAT.
Phase 2. To re-arrange the Activity Centre kitchen layout, fitout the new kitchen and provide a table and chair store: £36,000 plus VAT.
Our target is to raise the necessary funds during 2018 with the hope we can start work early in 2019.
So many children have great memories of this magical place and we are looking to ensure we can meet the needs for its continuing full use into the future.
How can you help?
By Clicking HERE