Halfway House, Polbathic #2

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Jessica Stanton and Russ Matterson are not new to Pub is The Hub and this is their second community-focused project:

They took over the Halfway House pub in 2015 and have turned the business around with a new menu, a brand new restaurant area, accommodation and home-grown fruit and vegetables. They are also very forward thinking and work hard to see the bigger local community picture. They first became involved with Pub is The Hub when they launched a micro library in an old disused room at the pub, funded jointly by Pub is The Hub’s Community Services Fund and Cornwall Council’s Library Service.

Early in 2017 they approached Pub is The hub again to see they could realise their plans for a play area in the pub garden for the local community and customers children to use.

Project Summary:

To build an adventure play area in a clump of woods at the top of the pub beer garden/allotment. This meant clearing bushes and making paths, building bespoke play equipment with adventure in mind. It also involved purchasing a couple of used small boats to encourage and develop the visitors’ imaginations.

The Polbathic Community Play Park was developed by Russ and Jessica in partnership with St German’s Primary School, St German’s Youth Group, parents and local volunteers to create a safe, inclusive play area for local children.

Outcomes so far:

Local children have helped to create, design and construct the area and added the finishing touches to the area accessed by a separate gate at the rear of the Halfway House pub by adding their handprints to the sign.

The play area now consists of several play zones including:

  • The Crow’s Nest – a purpose built outdoor platform built around a tree with a slide, climbing wall, pull up ramp and net climber;
  • a ‘Wigwam-ery’;
  • Mud Pub and Kitchen;
  • ‘Pirates of Polbathic Hideout’ in three boats donated to the project;
  • A play house donated to the project;
  • And a series of areas to encourage wildlife, including a bug hotel, hedgehog café and toad abode.

St German’s Youth Group added pots, pans and utensils that they have collected for the Mud Pub and Kitchen where children will be able to make mud ‘dishes of the day’ with mud, leaves and sticks.

The adventure play area is now open for the local community and customers’ children under supervision and the site will only get better with age.

Lessons to Learn:

  • Garden shape and size is no barrier to create something very unique and fun.
  • Including local children, the school and youth group has made the whole community feel part of the project – there is real community ownership.
  • This second project has already attracted lots of local media attention raising awareness for the overall business.
Project Costs:
Total Project Costs £3800
Contribution from Licensee   £800
CSF Grant (if applicable) £3000