STATEMENT ON THE FUTURE OF THE FIELDFARE TRUST

At the recently held Fieldfare Trust AGM the Chair of the Board of Trustees gave the following report:

Last year I started my report by stating that we had made slow but steady progress and that we had to make this year the one that counts.

Unfortunately the year has not panned out as we hoped. Despite receiving positive and encouraging feedback regarding both funding bids that we submitted this wasn’t sufficient to bring the money to our door. This leaves us in the regrettable situation where realistically The Fieldfare Trust is unable to continue.

This saddens me greatly, as we still receive regular requests for help in assistance, both from users looking for appropriate places to access the countryside and from access providers wishing to procure training and wanting information on how to improve their access provision.

It is clear from previous participants, teaching staff and volunteers that there is still a place for the Fiedlfare Challenge. Unfortunately we have fallen victim of the age old problem of identifying relevant funding streams. I’m very hopeful that there is a future for the Challenge. That will be determined by whether a volunteer group for the South Yorkshire area can be established. Hopefully a more localised model will be the beginning of the new Challenge.

The work to date on Phototrails is extremely positive and I sincerely hope that all the hard work put in so far comes to fruition. I’ve always thought that Phototrails is what the country has been waiting for, whoever is providing the service. It certainly has a place and I hope it finds it.

So we have reached a point of no return and have to take the difficult decision to start the process of winding up the Charity. Fieldfare has much to be proud of. It has helped to improve the accessibility of thousands of miles of routes, opening up new sites and giving all people more choice. It has given thousands of children and countless teachers and volunteer’s life changing experiences and here’s hoping that Phototrails becomes the last chapter of the legacy.

All current and past employees, Ian Newman in particular, should be proud of what they have achieved as the Fieldfare Trust.

We must now ensure that the process of winding up is a smooth one and we hope to organise a suitable celebration of everything that the Fieldfare Trust has achieved.

Matt Duckworth
Chair of the Board of Trustees
The Fieldfare Trust

Our sincere thanks to everyone who has ever had any involvement with the organisation, be it employee, Fieldfare Challenge participant, access provider or volunteer. We will contact people with invites to our closing celebration once something is arranged. If you would like to express an interest in attending then please contact me directly on mattduckworth@fieldfare.org.uk

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