Browsing articles in "News & Events"

Labyrinth bringing Harmony to Community

Jan 8, 2019   //   by friendsparkadmin   //   Latest News, News & Events  //  No Comments

A labyrinth will enhance the Park and bringing interactive work of art to unused performance area, A Labyrinth will be a great asset for not only local community, but to Carlisle & District.

We aim to raise £10,000 of match funding through this crowdfunding campaign, to unlock £30,000 from Entrust. No pledges will be taken until all the funding is in place. We will keep you updated. Thank you for your support! Labyrinth represents a journey to our own centre and back out again into the world…Today with heightened awareness of mental health, anxiety and stress, so many people could benefit from walking their path in the Labyrinth. The path would be wide enough for wheelchair users, and there will be a signage board at the entrance on the full use of Labyrinth. Although able to use independently, workshop days with deeper ancestors social heritage, and on mindfulness, would be held for all ages in the community – bringing harmony into our lives! The environment and conservation is at the heart of every project we undertake, our Labyrinth – landscape & stone path in geometrical shape in turf – protects our vegetation, and is also easily maintained.

What we’ll deliver:

  • Benches
  • Signage Boards
  • Block paved entrance

Why it’s a great idea:

The Friends is a constituted group of committed enthusiasts from all walks of life, dedicated to preserving the Park for the enjoyment of the community. We work closely with Carlisle City Council and with Morton Community Centre (situated in the grounds). Together we have obtained a major grant from Parks for People (HLF) to restore the historic and natural features and make it fit for the needs of people now and a park for future generations. This award back in 2009 also gave us an activities officer for four years, this brought us an abundance of regular weekly events which held either in park or in the Community Centre added to these we supported the yearly community events. We achieved Green Flag status for the last nine years, the only Park in Carlisle to have had Heritage Site. So an ancient labyrinth symbol like of couldn’t have a more fitting site in our Historical City. We put out questionnaires to local community. 73% wanted a labyrinth More than 212,000 visited last year

Steps to get it done:

  • getting match funding
  • Contractors on site
  • preparation of ground
  • create Labyrinth
  • grand opening of Labyrinth to public

While awaiting funding for a permanent Labyrinth we marked out a temporary labyrinth on the performance area, which has been enjoy by many, we have photos from different groups with letters supporting this project. Local school children Mrs Dewhurst writes :- Just to thank you once more for the opportunity of letting my class explore your labyrinth this morning. The children spotted it and were eager to use it last time we visited Chances Park, so it was great for them to be shown other ways of using it. The wide range of activities it lends itself to means it is something we can build into different areas of the Curriculum. They enjoyed being able to run round, or find other ways to travel through the pathways, and also take turns with the musical instruments. The meditative approach at the end fitted in well with our current RE theme of Prayer, and the silent response from the children reflected their ability to appreciate its use for quieter more contemplative activities.

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Forthcoming Events

Mar 22, 2018   //   by friendsparkadmin   //   Park Events  //  No Comments

Forthcoming Events
Soul Night fundraiser – 5th May in the Manor
Body Mind & Spirit fundraiser – 8th September

Planned Events – TBC
Summer Splash
Fairy Day
Rolling programme with school children
2nd Soul Night fundraiser
Carols at Christmas

For further details about any of these events please email

Friends of Chances Park AGM

Mar 22, 2018   //   by friendsparkadmin   //   Latest News  //  No Comments

Chairman’s Report 2017

We started the year with a questionnaire given out to park users to find out how they felt about the park eight years after the regeneration funded by the lottery.

We got a really good response with over 120 returned, and on the whole it seems everyone appreciates our beautiful park. However only 60% were satisfied with the range of activities offered and the two favourite suggestions (over 75%) for additions to the facilities were a labyrinth and adult exercise equipment. The Friends have therefore begun planning for a labyrinth on the performance area. It is also hoped that the adult exercise equipment could be a future project in conjunction with the Green Space team

The park continues to be used and enjoyed on daily basis and the footfall total for 2017 was 212,553, excluding those not entering through the gates. Parkrun. Over the last year – 1962 different runners took part and completed 11214 runs. We also had 171 different volunteers. In addition, we’ve welcomed tourists from all over the Uk and from the USA, Australia and New Zealand.

Thanks to the city council for gifting us a grit bin for use in icy weather. We celebrated our 5 th birthday on the 20 th January – that's 43,950 runs, 5,083 different participants, 7,856 PB’s and a total distance of 219,750km run. On Saturday we welcomed 258 finishers, 17 first timers and a lone first time tourist from………….Penrith!

The T’ai chi group meets on Monday mornings weather permitting in the beautiful park, or in the manor if not, and Chances Park regular Healthy Living walk takes place every Monday afternoon. Details are on the website if you would like to join these groups. You can also check out the Friends of Chances Park Facebook page to keep up to date with events.

We are very proud of the fact that once again Chances Park was awarded Green Flag status and also that this year in July the park were chosen to be one of the venues for Cumbria Schools to do their orienteering.

In July young people doing their National Citizens Award chose our park as their project and did some edging, litter picking and general tidying. Then in September a small team from James Rennie School who were also going in for the Award cleaned signage and painted rubbing white on the park. Other park users said how nice it was to see young people working on the park and how polite they were. Thanks to Green Space for supplying tools and picking up all the bags of rubbish/leaves collected.

The one real disappointment of the year was that the Fairy Day had to be cancelled due to an eleventh hour increase in the exhibitors' public liability insurance requirement. Hopefully the event can be reinstated at a future date. Body Mind Spirit Day in September however, was a great success and enjoyed by visitors and exhibitors alike.

Richard and Sue Dixon from RSPB helped with the annual cleaning out of bird boxes with good results. Most boxes had been used by blue tits, grey tits, tree sparrows. They also take on the job of any repairs required so thank you to Richard and Sue.

On the 1 st of December the children from Newlaithes School planted thousands of bluebell bulbs so look out for them in the spring.

This year the Community Centre hosted Christmas Carols in the manor in December and I believe it was as popular as ever.

Of course these projects wouldn't be possible without our fundraising events, which brings me to all the people who give their time voluntarily. Whether in helping organize events, delivering minutes, selling raffle tickets, litter picking or reporting lights out, all of these important tasks help keep our beautiful Green Flag park for all to enjoy.

I really can’t mention everyone by name but I must say a special thanks to the Greenspace team who are always willing to help us – working together on specific projects and in the day to day projects too – we do know how lucky we are. We would also like to pass on our thanks to Richard Reynolds our designated gardener.

Dates For Your Diary

Jun 21, 2017   //   by friendsparkadmin   //   Latest News, News & Events  //  No Comments

Saturday 16 September  Friends of Chances Park Annual Body, Mind, Spirit Day 10am – 4pm in the Manor.  Email for further details.  – FOCP fundraising event.

Further information to follow

Friday 1 December in the Manor  Carols at Christmas

Monday 29 January 2018 Friends AGM 2pm in Morton Manor

Walking for Health

Apr 25, 2017   //   by Iris Rogan   //   Latest News, News & Events, Park Events  //  No Comments

The Friends of Chances Park promote the Walking for Health programme of Carlisle walks. If you are looking for a new way to get fit, make new friends and discover more about the surrounding area, they maybe for you.

Manor Fairy Day

Apr 25, 2017   //   by Iris Rogan   //   Latest News  //  No Comments

Sunday 23rd July 2017 fro 11.00am to 3.00pm.

Rolling programme with pupils of Newlaithes School

Apr 25, 2017   //   by friendsparkadmin   //   News & Events, Park Events  //  Comments Off on Rolling programme with pupils of Newlaithes School

Rolling programme with pupils of Newlaithes School of either bulbs, wildflower or tree planting takes place every autumn.

Quarterly Friends of Chances Park Meetings

Apr 25, 2017   //   by friendsparkadmin   //   News & Events, Park Events  //  Comments Off on Quarterly Friends of Chances Park Meetings

For further details please contact Iris Rogan on 01228 522903 or email

Weekly Tai Chi

Apr 25, 2017   //   by friendsparkadmin   //   News & Events, Park Events  //  Comments Off on Weekly Tai Chi

Monday 10.30am to 11.30am in the Manor or the Park, weather permitting.

Weekly healthy living walks (voluntary community led group)

Apr 25, 2017   //   by friendsparkadmin   //   News & Events, Park Events  //  Comments Off on Weekly healthy living walks (voluntary community led group)

Mondays 2pm meet at the Manor, followed by an optional social get together in Manor café