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Easter is the time for camping

As many of us tend to go away in the Easter Break you may be interested to know that from 1934

onwards there was an Easter Camp established by the Methodist Church at Glen Forrest. The block was 20 acres and situated on what is now Glen Forrest Drive (formerly Burkinshaw Road ) opposite Rycroft Road. These camps continued until the early 1970s when the land was subdivided, and Glen Forrest Drive was constructed.

In our collection there is an account by Val Alexander who worked at Glen Forrest Primary School-


“During my early years I attended the Inglewood Methodist Church. Each Easter young members of the church would attend the Glen Forrest Easter Camp (near the primary school). I remember you had to be at 16 years old before you could attend.

They were great times and I attended each year until marriage as a 23yo. It was wonderful to make new friends from around the state been 100-200. We were housed in canvas marquees - one or two for the girls, and one or two for the boys (depending on the numbers attending.)

If you did not take your own camp stretcher your bedding was a straw paillasse, and most campers used grey, army type blankets for warmth. A few campers wanted extra 'comfort' and took a pillow and sheets. In the centre of each marquee a hurricane lamp hung from the roof to provide lighting during the evening. (Looking back this was dangerous - a hurricane lamp and all that straw!

Fortunately there were no accidents with fire during my time at Easter Camp.)

Meetings were held in separate marquee each evening and sometimes during the day as well:

and meals eaten in a 'dining room' (tin shed) if it was raining, and outside on trestle tables if it was fine. I remember the long row of metal 'sinks' where you washed your own dinner plates: with another area used as the kitchen. We dreaded being on 'Kitchen Duty' as it took ages to wash and tidy up after the meal, and you missed out on the fun everyone else was having.

Ablutions were carried out in separate male /female toilet/shower blocks. No hot water provided – cold showers for everyone.

During the afternoons groups of people would go for walks around the area. Some people would cut their walk 'short' and rush back to the camp to have a shower in the sun-warmed water before it turned cold”.

In 1950 a record number of 450 young people attended that year’s camp. They arrived at the railway station in six specially booked trains pulled by 30 steam engines, which stood there hissing until they were required to take the campers away again ….. It is recalled that ……to hear the young singing as groups of them walked around the Glen was "reminiscent of Welshmen in Wales “


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