On Saturday 14th September, Greenfield launched their new 10 acre site with a festival taking place on their very own field.
Previously located on Brooklyn Road, Greenfield School has been established in Woking for over 85 years. The Victorian house on Brooklyn Road which first housed the senior school and then the prep school was full of character and charm, but there was no denying it lacked outside space.
After years of steady growth, the school experienced its most successful period, resulting in most year groups being oversubscribed. This success meant that the school could confidently move to a bigger site and expand to two forms per year group in time for their re-opening this September.
Parents and staff pulled together and worked hard over the summer holidays to give the new premises the unique feel of Greenfield. From fresh paint and new carpets to bright shrubs and a fun play area for younger children, the hard work paid off and the site was ready for the excited children and teachers to return.
Greenfield Festival, organised by Friends of Greenfield School or “FroGS” was a chance to bring the whole Greenfield community together to celebrate the site in all of its expanse and open this new chapter.
The afternoon began with all Greenfield pupils, aged from rising 3 to 11 years, taking part in an eco-parade and song. On the first day of term, the children had spent time making banners and posters based around several eco themes including endangered animals, recycling, deforestation and wildlife in Woking. They proudly displayed the artwork to their parents and members of the wider Greenfield community while parading in the playground.
Following the parade, Headmistress Tania Botting opened the festival by throwing the first “paint bomb” onto a large art canvas, and cutting the green ribbon. Mrs Botting says: “We are absolutely delighted to be able to celebrate our new home in this way. A team of people have been working hard behind the scenes over the summer to get the school ready and it looks wonderful. It is a very exciting time for Greenfield School.”
Whilst parents and grandparents relaxed on the grass with live music, street food and tipples from the bar, children took to the bumper cars, bungee trampolines and donkey rides. Many visited the face painting tent and emerged as spotty dogs, butterflies and dragons.
A pop-up circus provided entertainment for all the family and there were a number of local businesses who provided prizes for the raffle, including Mr Milligan’s Pirate Golf and The Inn at Maybury.
The festival also provided a great opportunity to open up the onsite Forest School, where children could take part in a forest trail and nature based craft activities. This outdoor classroom is one of two forests belonging to Greenfield and provides every pupil with the opportunity to connect with nature, build confidence and apply classroom learning to different tasks.
The highlight of the afternoon for children and adults alike was the “It’s a Knockout” competition. Some will remember the hit British family game show broadcast in 1960-1980, where contestants competed in school sports day style tasks (often involving getting wet and messy) to win points and take home a special trophy.
At Greenfield Festival, teams of children, parents, staff and alumni competed to be crowned Greenfield champions. Luckily it was a beautifully sunny day and so not even the adults minded getting wet and soapy! Many of the teams donned matching outfits including tutus, shower caps and superhero costumes.
After hours of family fun, the festival didn’t stop there! Into the evening, there was marshmallow roasting over an open campfire and an outdoor cinema where those still standing snuggled up under blankets to watch family favourite, Home Alone.
The festival was the perfect way to open an exciting chapter for Greenfield School. As the new term begins, there is a buzz of anticipation around the school for what is in store over this next year, with no doubt many more celebrations to come.