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July 21, 2011

A very special place to remember Huw : bench and flower tubs at Sands

by huw15

Sands has always been a special place for Huw – like it has for many people who spend their childhood and teenage years in Holmfirth.  Huw first visited Sands in his pushchair and started playing their as soon as he could walk – using the play area over the bridge as a toddler and later with Carys joining him.  An early friend he played with as a toddler at Sands was Matthew Woolhouse.  Sands is a very special place and a beautiful bench engraved as shown in the pictures, and plant tubs now sit proud on a slightly raised area overlooking the park.

Huw continued to enjoy the facilities at Sands as he grew up.  From using the play area with young friends and cousins from both sides of the family, he moved on to playing football on the grass – he was always very eager to have what as a little boy he called ‘a real match’.  It was not hard for a game to qualify as a ‘real match’ – Huw was happy as long as the score was kept, it had two goals (with jumpers) and each side had at least two players 🙂

Like many children from Holmfirth, Huw and Carys both learnt to swim in the swimming baths at Sands, and when they got older they put those skills to good use when jumping into the pools in the stream that runs along side the park.  The stream has a rope swing across it and lots of good places to mess about in the water.   Huw also used his scooter in the skateboard area as a young boy.

Sands is an idilyc area – a young children’s play area, lots of grass, water, a rope swing, a swimming pool, trees, football pitches, a skateboard / jump bike area, and a ball cage.  It is the perfect place for children to play and teenagers to hang out in a safe environment – it’s next door to the Police Station after all!  Spending time outside is such an important part of life especially for young people.  Sands is perfect for healthy activities and freedom.

Huw grew up as a teenager to spend a lot of time in the ball cage with his friends – with regular visits to the shops for snacks.  Sometimes he’d stay there for hours and hours whatever the weather – and never with a coat 🙂  He always came back home happy and with a smile – ready for a shower and clean clothes (sometimes with his clothes needing mending).  Ready for some nice time at home – often ready for his bed!

In the warmer weather the teenagers sometimes just sit and chill at Sands – even with a barbecue or something else to eat – it is a lovely meeting place.

It means a lot that Huw’s bench, generously provided by a group of mainly Upperthong families (see below) is sitting there overlooking such a happy place.  As soon as it was put up on 21st July 2011, Nick was delighted to see Huw’s friends sitting on it and relaxing – and perhaps remembering their friend who means so much to them.  The bench has 2 plant tubs next to it (provided by Huw’s Trust) to form a giant letter ‘H’.  We want people to enjoy ‘sitting with Huw’ and to relax and mess about just as normal.  We just know that the bench and tubs will be looked after as well as providing a focal point.  Thank you so much to those who contributed.  A lot of us will enjoy meeting up at Huw’s special area at Sands.  Such a special place x x x

Thank you to everyone who contributed to the cost of the bench: The Gunterts, The Travis family, The Allcock family, The Briggs family, The Quinn family, The Hill family, Annette Brooke, Julie Bowers, Al Birkhead and family, The Broomhead family, Debbie Williams and family, The Van Royen family, Jenny, Nick and Carys, The Huw Thatcher Trust.

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