Volunteer to make a difference with Make Your Way in Stonehouse

Get involved this summer

Filed under News
Date posted: Friday, 14 July 2017

Volunteer to get Stonehouse moving by helping out with two unique volunteering days over the next month, as part of the Make Your Way arts, heritage and active travel project.

Enthusiastic volunteers with a few hours to spare are sought to get involved with the following hands-on practical opportunities in various locations in Stonehouse, led by Clydesdale Community Initiatives.

Create an outdoor learning space at Newfield Primary School, Monday 31 July, 10:30am – 2pm

Install ‘Journey Box’ art installations on the Make Your Way trails, Tuesday 8 August, 1:30 – 3pm

Both of the volunteer tasks are part of the Make Your Way project which launched last October, encouraging communities in Carluke, Glassford, Lanark, Larkhall and Stonehouse to walk and cycle more locally, whilst exploring the heritage on their doorsteps.

Stonehouse Park, part of the 'Picture Trail' in the Make Your Way Stonehouse trails. Image Archibald Photography Ltd

Make Your Way is part of the Heritage Lottery Fund and LEADER supported Clyde and Avon Landscape Partnership (CAVLP), delivered by icecream architecture with additional support from Scottish Government Smarter Choices Smarter Places funding.

The Make Your Way team worked with communities and schools to identify heritage points and routes in order to create new trails. As part of the engagement process, outdoor education workshops connecting school pupils with their local green spaces and environment took place, such as eco-dying and kite-making. Artists in Residence were also commissioned to create site specific art installations in response to community consultations and research, along the newly created trails in each of the five locations.

The two ways to get involved include:

Create an outdoor learning space at Newfield Primary School, Monday 31 July, 10:30am – 2pm

Meet at: Newfield Primary School gates, 46 Muirhead, Stonehouse, ML9 3HQ

Volunteers will help to create an outdoor learning space at Newfield Primary School to enable the school to engage in a long-term outdoor learning programme.

Located in an area of privately owned green space opposite the school, the site was recently used for Make Your Way outdoor education activities and made more accessible to pupils through a unique backpack ladder which allows entry to the site over a wire fence. 

Volunteers will be involved in general site clearance including litter picking and strimming to create paths and learning areas. No experience is required as training will be given by Clydesdale Community Initiatives.

A similar site clearance took place at St Mary’s Primary School, Lanark, in April, led by Clydesdale Community Initiatives in partnership with Greenbelt. Watch the short video at the bottom of the page.

Pupils from Newfield Primary School enjoy use of the backpack ladder with Project Officer Michael
Pupils from Newfield Primary School enjoy use of the backpack ladder with Project Officer Michael

Install ‘Journey Box’ art installations on the Make Your Way trails, Tuesday 8 August, 1:30 – 3pm

Meet at: Stonehouse Lifestyles Centre, ML9 3JL

Volunteers are also being sought to help install ‘Journey Box’ art installations on the Stonehouse Make Your Way trails. The 16 timber boxes, which are categorised as either ‘heritage’ or ‘nature’, were crafted by Make Your Way Artists in Residence for Stonehouse, Martyn Mckenzie and Kate McAllan. The collection of Journey Boxes will be installed throughout Stonehouse, each containing objects, artefacts, and imagery relating to the local heritage and natural assets of the village.

A Journey Box with sketches and collected items inside
A Journey Box with sketches and collected items inside

They were created in partnership with the community and led on from a Journey Boxes outdoor arts workshop that took place in March this year, where participants produced their own collection of artwork to keep. The Journey Box idea was partly inspired by geo-caching and the installations have been created to encourage conversation locally about local heritage and environment.  Objects and pieces of art can be swapped and recorded in the accompanying log book.

Volunteers will be involved in installing pre-made timber posts along the Stonehouse Make Your Way trails. No experience is required as training will be given by Clydesdale Community Initiatives.

Please register for each of the sessions by contacting This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. / 01555 664 211. Volunteers are asked to wear weather appropriate clothing. Tools and Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) will be provided.

Volunteers will enjoy views like this, from the Stone's Throw Make Your Way Stonehouse trail
Volunteers will enjoy views like this, from the Stone's Throw Make Your Way Stonehouse trail

Donna Marshall, CAVLP Programme Manager says, “Volunteers who are able to join in on either day in Stonehouse will be playing a vital role in the legacy of the projects and the impact they will have for locals. We’re extremely proud that access to a new outdoor learning space will be created for pupils at Newfield Primary School, enabling them to embark on an outdoor education programme. It’s increasingly recognised that outdoor education is imperative for childhood development, especially in this age where screen time is often the more popular choice over wild time.”

She continues, “Volunteers who are able to help install the Journey Boxes’ timber posts are making it possible for the local community and visitors to enjoy and explore what Stonehouse has to offer. We would encourage anyone who has the time to help out – we can’t do it alone.”

Newfield Primary School pupils enjoy the green space near the school
Newfield Primary School pupils enjoy the green space near the school

A number of environmental volunteering projects within the Clyde and Avon Valley Landscape Partnership are being led by social enterprise CCI, including Clyde Walkway Community Links Path Surveying, Community Gardening at Castlebank Park, Lanark and Lesmahagow Allotments, Community Clear-ups at Jock’s Burn, Carluke, and Volunteering Team Days at Mauldslie Woods.

Helen Thomson, CCI Placement Support Worker says, “The volunteering opportunities available through the CAVLP projects are open to existing CCI clients and members of the public. We receive really good feedback from all volunteers that they get a huge amount of satisfaction on working on projects together that they can see real lasting and tangible results of in communities.”

Find out more about Make Your Way and download maps to explore Carluke, Glassford, Lanark, Larkhall and Stonehouse by visiting www.clydeandavonvalley.org/make-your-way. Join in the conversation on social media using #MakeYourWay.

Watch the video below to find out more about the Clydesdale Community Initiatives site clearance for St Mary's Primary School, Lanark.

Area Guide

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