The access points on Old Bedford Road and Barnfield Avenue have recently been kept locked thereby stopping access from anyone within the local and wider community from being able to use the field as they may have done so un-challenged in the past.

One of the BDAG committee members has spoken with the Principal's office, purely as a concerned neighbour and here are notes from that call as we were informed that this has happened for two main reasons:

  1. For the security of staff and students. We asked if there had been any specific issues and were told that there had not. This now seems to be incorrect information as we have heard of one such incident
  2. There is concern over the amount of dog’s fouling the field and then excrement being bought into college buildings off shoes.

We then discussed the following:

  • regarding access, although we were informed by the Principal’s PA that no access is now allowed, we have seen football being played and we are trying to find out the access process the college has instigated

    It’s worth noting that a member of our community has also reported back after seeing a local group of children and it seems that they have had to pay to train on the field, then the gate from the car park would be opened for their access

  • If the community agrees we would even go so far as to suggest a mid-way agreement whereby the community could gain access to the field with a pre-booking process, perhaps online so that the college can keep track of the field’s usage?

  • regarding dog-fouling, we would suggest that their signage needs to be much more visible and that they need to be more active in ensuring that should they see this abuse, the abusers are suitably spoken with and verbally warned. Then, as a final resort, fined in line with the same rulings as on public roads

In addition, thank you to those who have contacted us on this website

We are also asking for your help to see if anyone can research into the ‘right of way’ issue. BDAG has already looked into this and are unsure if we can establish this and would welcome you looking into this and sharing your findings

Our reason for emailing you is to let you know our suggested plan. In the past, Barnfield has always said that they want to stay engaged with the local community and so rather than simply lock down access to a green space the community, both local and further afield, have had the fortunate pleasure to use for many, many years - it would seem to us that BDAG should again be proactive and start a dialogue with the college

We know the field is private property but it seems unfair to make such a radical move without any level of consultation. It’s also worth noting that we are aware the field was previously maintained at public expense

Obviously we want to know your thoughts so that we can, in the first instance write a letter to the Principal in which we will also request a face to face meeting

Please can we ask for your support to forward this email to friends and family members who may have the same concerns as BDAG so they can contact us as well.

Thank you if you have already sent in your comments and as we know that the summer holidays are fast approaching and would be grateful to receive your replies and comments by no later than Monday 6th July

Thank you

And finally, BDAG would like to invite more members of our community to get involved and join our committee. We are aware that everyone has busy lives - juggling work, family and life in general and so we keep meetings to a minimum and only meet up when we have actual relevant points to discuss - and so please let us know if you are interested

We look forward to welcoming you along