News in Harleston

Harleston News


Ready for Outer Space

Our Cranes are next in the flight queue, due to launch on 5 November. If all goes well it will be the highest peace message in the world on that day. If you are thinking that payload looks scruffy, it's because it has flown it more than 30 times from four countries: Chile, Norway, Sweden, and the USA. It's international pedigree is appropriate to our flight of worldwide peace.


The Next Journey of Peace

1000 origami cranes, each carrying Harleston's message of peace and personal thoughts from hundreds of pupils and students, with swift-printed wingtips hung all summer in a large display. In September the swift-printed wing-tips were cut off and placed in a clear sphere to represent the planet. The sphere travelled to the UN and Ground Zero. 1000 Wing-tips are now embarking with a peace message on an epic journey via California, hopefully to the edge of space , where, if all goes well, they will be the highest peace message in the world on that day. Our Town Crier announced their departure in inimitable traditional style.

Quite a mission for the people of Harleston, The Rotary Club and Harleston's Future. We have our fingers crossed for their safe return.


Harleston History

In many old guide books Harleston is described as being a town of Georgian and Victorian houses. Whilst the centre of the town looks like this is the case, in reality the buildings are far older - but hidden!  What we see here is just a facade, beneath which the Harleston of the 1300's to 1600's remains!  It just has to be discovered.  There are over 160 very old buildings in the town, many with some of the original features still visible.  We will be publishing regular articles about individual buildings to create a list of some of the architectural masterpeices inside Harleston.  Keep a look out for new entries, then come to Harleston and see for youselves. Read more >


Food Festival

The flags have gone up to support the Harleston and Waveney Food and Drink Festival. This year the theme is apples. Harleston is going apple-crazy on Saturday 7 October, with Harleston celebrating all things appley. There will be a Street Market with stalls selling an array of locally-made products, from savoury pies to mouth-watering cakes and pastries, locally-reared meat to bottled preserves and fruit liqueurs, artisan bread to locally made apple juice and cider. There will also be apple games and activities.


Harleston Sends Peace Message to United Nations

Simultaneously with the ringing of the United Nations’ Peace Bell in New York (9.00 - 9.30am US Eastern time), bells will peal at St John’s Church in Harleston between 2.00 and 2.30pm (BST) on Friday 15 September as a forerunner to the UN's International Day of Peace (21 September).

The chimes will bid Robin Twigge from Harleston and District Rotary Club 'bon voyage' as he carries wingtips clipped from each of the 1,000 origami crane peace messages on display in the church to the Peace Bell outside the United Nations building in New York. He will then take them on to 'Ground Zero' - the memorial at the site of the 'Twin Towers' - before returning the wing tips to Harleston for a ceremonry to mark Peace Day on 21 September.

'Taking the wing tips to such symbolic places in New York is a small but powerful way to unite our community’s hopes and wishes for local harmony and international peace with peoples across the globe', said Mrs Pat Webb, President of Harlestonand District Rotary Club.

The Peace Bell, cast from coins sent by children from all over the world, was donated by Japan to the United Nations in 1954.


1000 Origami Cranes for Peace 'given wings'

Following Harleston’s Future’s New Year Resolution to promote making 1000 Japanese origami cranes for peace, Oscar Simmonds, a year 10 student and one of a group of Peace Advocates at Archbishop Sancroft High School (ASHS), Harleston, South Norfolk, Joined Mrs Pat Webb, Peace Officer, Rotary District 1080 – East Anglia and Vice-President of the Rotary Club of Harleston and District, to ‘give wings’ to the resolution. The Project will also combine making the origami cranes, with the town’s well-known swifts initiative. 

Mrs Webb and Oscar, were joined by Cllr Barry Woods, Chair of Redenhall with Harleston Town Council and Rob Connelly, Deputy Head-teacher at ASHS.


Swifts: They’re back and we are ready

After their epic non-stop journeys to over-winter in Africa, Harleston's swifts are arriving back at their traditional nesting sites in the town.  While they have been away, Harleston’s Future Swift Action Group have been busy increasing the number of potential nesting sites on buildings in the town.  About 120 new swift nest boxes have been erected to provide plenty of extra residences for young or displaced swifts looking for a new home. 

To mark the swifts return in the first week of May,  a special welcome flag was raised in the edge of the market place in Harleston town centre, when the first birds were spotted. 

Swifts numbers have been declining sharply, in part through loss of their traditional nest sites when roofs are renewed and old buildings demolished or converted.  Their plight has caught the imagination of communities throughout Britain, and Harleston is no exception.

'It's simply staggering that they have been flying ever since they left last year and will only land again as they return to their nest sites', said Norman Hart, Chairman of Harleston's Future. They are very loyal to their exact nesting location, that's why we need to protect existing sites and to create more to help to improve their fortunes and to keep the summer skies above Harleston alive.



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