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Enchanting vision of Fairyland

PUBLISHED: 07:23 20 June 2006 | UPDATED: 11:03 22 October 2010

If you go down to the woods today… You may chance upon a group of fairies sitting in a circle, their wings glistening in the sunshine, talking earnestly about how to save the forest.

If you go down to the woods today… You may chance upon a group of fairies sitting in a circle, their wings glistening in the sunshine, talking earnestly about how to save the forest.

And you would not have stumbled on to the set of a Lord of the Rings film - in fact, you would probably be in the middle of Britain's first Fairyland.

Wells-based organisation the Fairyland Trust is hoping to create an enchanted paradise at the existing wild flower nursery at Natural Surround-ings, on the Bayfield Estate in the Glaven Valley near Holt.

Calling on folklore and fairytales, the organisation aims to teach children how to appreciate nature and conservation while promoting imaginative outdoor fun.

The scheme would also seek to buy land around the country to preserve as fairy-lands, where children can roam free and let their imaginations run wild.

Trust co-ordinator and founder Sarah Wise said: "If there was a way of getting children interested in the outdoors, this is it."

"We run workshops where we make fairy jewellery and say to the children: 'What would inspire a fairy to make jewellery? The things around her.' So the children look at insects and all their beautiful colours and re-create them in their designs."

The trust already runs an annual Fairy Fair, which this year attracted 7,000 people to Narborough Hall, near Swaffham, in May.

"It would be nice to have something permanent so that children can come every weekend if they wanted to. It's very restrictive running one-off events," said Sarah.

The Glaven Valley site would be Britain's first-ever permanent Fairyland and offer a variety of games run from Hobbit-esque huts hidden among the greenery.

Sarah explained: "We have workshops for making fairy wings, as modelled on butter-flies and other flying insects.

"We also have Witch's Kitchen where a herbalist teaches children to make things like herbal bath

bombs and lavender sleeping potion."

Activities offered at the new site would include story-telling, animal lanterns and Cooking for Trolls - mud-pie making, as invented by Sarah's daughters Amazon, aged nine, and Willow, seven.

The first task for Sarah and her team of helpers to over-come is to raise £50,000 by October to secure the site. She said: "We already have £9,000 but we need so much more. It would be such a wonderful resource for children."

Ways to help make this mid-summer night's dream come true include becoming a Fairyland Founder and giving a set amount per month, or

by becoming a Fairy Queen for a day.

For more information visit www.fairylandtrust.org


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