Orston Millennium Green


The Third Orston Duck and Dog day was held on July 10th 2011, and Gillie Ford was our reporter.

Millennium Green Revisited
Dog and Duck and Fun Run Sunday
And much more

The year was 2011 or was it 1970? The Millennium Green with its idyllic setting in front of the magnificent memorial stone was in a delightful time warp.

It started with the Fun Run organised by David and Lisa Wheeler, quite a gathering racing around in the sunshine way beyond the tranquil church. Adrian Watson from Orston won in an amazing time of 29 minutes 25 seconds. The fastest female was also an Orstonite Vicky Raynor, it was a personal best 40 minutes and 43 seconds. Dan Gullis, again from Orston, the second youngest was just about leading until the end.

When the Dog Show started, the whole place lit up, the children’s joy at showing their dogs oblivious of anything was enchanting and the International Championship Judge encouraging them to “Crufts” perfection. We entered our dog even though obedience lessons and tricks seemed to be absorbed by osmosis with little recollection for putting it into practice. There were jumps to clamber over, sausages to catch and the grande finale was the fancy dress. This was won by the Springer Spaniel brothers, having shared the same litter, they shared the top prizes. Max made the most convincing Bob the Builder and Bailey was a formidable Sherlock Holmes complete with pipe.

The covered tents enlivened the Green, there was a sparkling bar, a cake stall to catch the eye, a Tombola swarming with Brownies as bright as buttercups, stunning plants, a delicious barbeque and a treasure hunt organised by the Chapel elders, easily mistaken for the Pirates of Penzance!

Then came the Duck Race, you bought your ticket from a gentleman in a genuine 1970′s white skimmer, then the sound of a rocket drew us like a magnet to the banks of the Smite. Five hundred plastic yellow numbered ducks sailed by and Ralph Madgwick’s duck won by several lengths (still awaiting results of doping test ed). All that fresh air, the dragonflies and handmade downhill racing cars wheeling along the river bank and through the spreading limbs of the willow tunnel, nothing jarred it was a delight.

The efficiently run Dog and Duck Day was due to the excellent Committee. Envy Orston enriched by this experience, we laughed and shared nostalgic reminiscences. It was a triumph.

Finally a very special thank you to Will Gunn and Nick without whom, the event would not be possible.

Picture of the unveiling of Barry Gibson’s memorial stone is Here

As some of you will have noticed the names of the Gibson Bridge spindle donors have become indistinct, with time The problem has been the ageing of the wood , and the gradual eating away of the wood by wasps!

Tony Steene, who used his pyrography skills to engrave the bridge has sadly died, so we have no way of currently remedying the situation. However, a list of the spindle donors is available here.

Should any of the non-spindle donors wish to be added to a similar list, please let Pauline Fazackerley know

Following Malcolm Cooper’s relocation to Scotland, The Millennium Green Trust has a vacancy for a trustee. If you’re interested in becoming a trustee please approach any of the trustees listed below.

We thank Malcolm, for his energy and enthusiasm and wish him well for the future.


The Orston Millennium Green was created as part of the project to mark the new Millennium. The land itself was donated by Barry Gibson and money was raised from local and central government as well as the residents of Orston to finance the planting of trees and the building of paths and the footbridge.

The bridge links two existing footpaths to create a circular footpath around the village.
The Green is divided into a number of habitats, a mown utility area for sport and recreation, a flower meadow, deciduous woodlands planted with native species and a wilderness area where the pond once was.

Other points of interest are the Major Oak clone and the willow tunnel.

The River Smite which runs along the eastern edge of the green is a rich habitat in itself with many varieties of fish including a number of large pike.

Governing Principals

The Orston Millennium Green and Gibson Bridge are held in trust for the people of Orston and administered by the Orston Millennium Green Trust.(OMGT)

The OMGT is a registered charity (1076070) made up of volunteer Trustees from the village of Orston.

The Trustees meet at least twice a year to conduct the administration and business of the Trust, in accordance with the Trust Deed.

Maintenance of the area is carried out by Trustees and volunteers using their own equipment and generally at their own expense.

The Millennium Green has minimal rules governing its use, however as a result of experiences and health and safety considerations a number of restrictions have been introduced.

Restrictions on use

The following are not permitted on the Millennium Green, the Gibson Bridge or the Smite abutting the Green.

The use of motorised vehicles, swimming, hunting or shooting, fishing after dark, the setting of fires, camping, destruction of vegetation, disturbing of wildlife, drinking of alcohol after dark, or any activity thought undesirable by a Trustee at that time.


Q: Can we use the Millennium Green for a wedding?
A: The Trustees feel that weddings would not be in keeping with the area and would restrict access to other users

Q: Why is camping not allowed on the Green?
A: As toilets are not available on site, it is considered a potential health hazard to allow camping.

Public Consultation
The Trustees would welcome your comments, views or suggestions concerning the Millennium Green.


  • Pauline Fazackerley 851379
  • Jeff Dickinson 851375
  • Sheila Barnes 851993
  • Elspeth Rai 851990
  • Fiona Gullis 851693
  • Brian Harrison 850725
  • Ken Kent 851522
  • Jean Long 850734
  • Lisa Wheeler 850994
  • Caroline Newton 850190

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