Residents Meetings

ARM minutes published

Draft minutes of our last All Residents’ Meeting (16 March) have been published. You can download them from – look for the “next meeting” link.

Our next meeting will be the Annual General Meeting on Wednesday 18 May, 7:30pm in the Energy Centre.

Also, look out for:

The Derwenthorpe Arts Festival Friday 22nd and Saturday 23rd April.

Community Activity Network meeting Tues 10th May, 7pm at the Energy Centre, and

Responding to Anti-Social Behaviour and Other Conflicts: A Community Restorative Justice Approach 7:30pm to 9pm on Thursday 14th April in the Energy Centre.

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Nature group sessions

Spring is here! And we’re going to be busy on Wednesday 30th and Thursday 31st March, and Friday 1st April. On Wednesday and Thursday we’ll probably be helping with mass mulching of borders, starting on Rowntree. On Friday, St Nicks will lead plug planting of wild flowers around the estate. We meet at 10.00 am at the energy centre, and the sessions finish between noon and 1.00 pm, depending on how we get on. Everyone is welcome – no special skills are required, just enthusiasm. And please don’t feel you have to come for the whole or all the sessions – just half an hour can really make a difference. If you come along later, phone the number in the window of the energy centre so you can catch up with us. Spades, rakes and wheelbarrows will be useful for mulching, and hand tools and kneelers for plug planting – bring what you can, but JRHT and St Nicks will have some spares. Please wear gardening gloves and suitable footwear. For more information on these sessions or about the nature group in general contact Wendy by emailing




We have an exciting programme planned, starting with Earth Day Art and a Lantern Lit Family Fancy Dress Parade around the estate on Friday evening. The programme continues all day Saturday with events and activities for all ages. Below is the full programme, as currently planned – some details may change. The final programme will be distributed in print form along with the April/May LotsOn.



Remember all the beautiful rainbows in our windows during lockdown? Let’s make something different for people to enjoy as they walk around. Choose something you love about our earth and make pictures of it for your front window – could be a favourite tree or animal, butterfly or flower, a picture of a place that you love around Derwenthorpe. Show your love for our planet and let people know Earth Day is coming on 22 April. We aim to have a low impact on the environment so we’ll spend no money and buy nothing for these projects – reuse and recycle whatever material you can find.

LANTERN WORKSHOPS – FRIDAY 1st, 8th, 15th April

In the lead up to the festival we will be holding a series of three two lantern making workshops led by Heather Dawe, an experienced lantern maker, on Friday evenings at the Energy Centre, from 7:30 pm. The first (8th April) will help you create a design for your lantern. In the second and you will begin to make the frame from willow canes. And finally in the third In the second workshop (15h April) you will install lights and cover the frame with tissue paper.

These workshops are free and all materials (willow canes, masking tape, tissue, glue and lights) will be provided. Spaces are limited, and to help us when ordering materials, please register your intention to attend the workshops by email to


10:00 – 12:00: Art For Earth Day

To celebrate Earth Day; meet in the playground and create some climate change art, with Debby Cobbett from Derwenthorpe Action on Climate Change. This workshop is for children of all ages. Young children should be accompanied by their caregiver.

  • Create some messy art using natural, found materials. Bring your seaside bucket and spade, or just a flower pot and an old spoon and a paper plate or dish. You might end up making a funny face, or a picture of an animal or even a mini-garden. 
  • How about joining us to make posters for our planet and for climate justice?  Bring whatever materials you can from home, such as pens and paints and old cardboard boxes. We’ll also supply some materials.  There will be space to display all our art on the playground railings, alongside panels from York Stitches for Survival which were on display at COP26 in Glasgow.

BONUS – there will be some seeds and seedlings to swap and share, so you’ll be able to take home something to grow. 

8:30 – 9:30 pm: Family Lantern and Fancy Dress Parade

Gather outside the Energy Centre from 8:15 pm. The parade will start 10 minutes after sunset, at 8:30 and will follow a route passing through each quarter, led by Sheelagh Loftus and taking about 45 minutes.

Gather in the Energy Centre afterwards for light refreshments.



10:00 – 11:00 Move It Or Lose It with Karen Hill

Learn about an exercise class programme developed by Move It or Lose It! for the over 60s and people with mobility problems. The speaker is a qualified chartered physiotherapist and Move It or Lose It instructor. There will be an opportunity to join in with some simple exercises during the session.

11:00 – 12:00 Singing For All

Join Carol Warren to learn some simple rounds and harmony songs from all over the world. No experience necessary, just bring your voice. Suitable for adults and accompanied children over 10 years old.

12:30 – 13:00 Outdoor Drawing / Painting Workshop – Part 1

Gather in the Energy Centre. Bring your own materials, if you can, and something to sit on. Some paper and boards will be available if you don’t have any. Led by Juliet MacMichael. Open to all.

13:00 – 13:45 Whispering House – Film

This film was created with people from the Tang Hall and Heworth communities and recorded at Riding Lights Theatre.

14:00 – 15:00 Origami Workshop

Lean the ancient Japanese art of paper folding. Led by Megumi Bailey of York University. This workshop is free and all materials will be provided. Space is limited so please register your intention to participate by email to

15:00 – 16:00 Outdoor Drawing / Painting Workshop – Part 2

Return to Energy Centre to share and display your art

17:00 – 18:00 St Aelreds Players

The Players are a community theatre group, based in Tang Hall, who provide a performance of music, song and dance, showcasing our wonderful local talent.


10:00 – 16:00: Derwenthorpe Lockdown Wall Hanging. 

See the marvellous seasonal panels the crafters have created during lockdown.


10:45 – 11:15 The Hare In The Moon by Hoglets.

Hoglets Theatre will take you on a magical journey, exploring the true meaning of kindness using interactive storytelling, puppetry and original music. Suitable for pre-school and primary children.

11:45 – 12:30 Kindermusik 

Cath Smithson invites young families to celebrate the season with a Kindermusik Springtime Special. We’ll sing, dance and explore simple percussion together. Session suitable for 0-5s with their caregivers.

12:30 – 13:00 Minster Ukes

Minster Ukes is a sing along ukulele band that meets every Tuesday evening at the Corner Pin pub. The band has a wide ranging repertoire of songs, including classics from Buddy Holly, The Beatles, Bonzo Dog Dooda Band, Neil Diamond and Amy Winehouse.

13:15 – 14:15 Caramba – Folk/world music trio

Founded in 2002, Caramba is based in York. We’re a multi-instrumental group (fiddle, guitars, mandolin, African thumb piano, whistles, and percussion) and we sing in 3-part harmony. Caramba specialises in music from Africa (where band member John was raised) and Latin America, but also covers other styles, such as Cajun, blue grass, folk and others.

14:30 – 15:30 White Sail 

White Sail are York-based trio Sarah Dean, Jane Stockdale & Chris Bartram. With a glorious melding of harmony vocals & guitars, mandolin, Celtic harp, Appalachian dulcimer, shruti box, trumpet, flute, woodwinds & percussion, the trio perform their own unique material at gigs and festivals.

15:45 – 16:45 Bargestra

Bargestra!  An all inclusive community band from The Arts Barge Project about 25 strong.  We play a wide range of styles, incorporating improvisation, classics and new music.  Bargestra rehearses Thursday nights and always looking for new collaborations, players and compositions.


Craft Group Stall

Crafts and activities. Also, there will be a 2nd hand art book table; bring old art or craft books you no longer want and/or take away any books that grab your interest.

Artists Stalls

– Irma Gemmell, is a printmaker, painter and children’s illustrator. 

– Hilary Walker’s nature inspired jewellery and homeware items are made of paper clay and reclaimed wood, with an emphasis on recycled and recyclable materials and minimal waste.

Wandering Minstrels

See if you can spot our resident lutelele musician doing a walkabout and members of Minster Ukes playing elsewhere throughout the day.

Yorky Pud Street Band

This energetic, brassy, busking group will be performing by the oak tree or perhaps down by the lakes. Give them a good cheer. And some reward.

10:30 – 11:30 and 14:30 – 15:30 Tea / Coffee and Cake

Take a break under the Energy Centre portico where they will be serving tea coffee and homemade cakes. This is provided by the CAN group.

12:00 – 16:00 Guy Wapples Pizza Van 

The van will be parked to one side of the grassy area serving hot food most of the afternoon.

14:00 – 15:00 Ice Cream Van

Time to cool off? An ice cream van will be near the pizza van.


Art Exhibition

Art from the local art group will be on display – hung from the railings.

Invited Artists and Crafters from York River Art Market and York Open Studios

Stroll and browse the art and crafts on display and for sale

Photography Competition

Why not enter the DAF photo competition. This year’s theme is ‘My Happy Place’ – get out your camera or smartphone and send up to 3 photos of your happy places wherever or whatever they might be (in Derwenthorpe or elsewhere) to by Friday 8th April. The age groups are :- up to 5 years; 6-10 years; 11-17 years; and adults. Include your name and age group and a title for each photo. If any of your images includes people please make sure you have their consent before submitting. 

The winning photographs will be mounted and displayed on the railings around the playground. Further information is available at

Earth Day Art

See the fantastic Earth Day Art created by the children on Friday

 Painted Stones Trail

Take a stone, paint it and add it to a colourful trail of stones


Got Talent? Come along to the Derwent Arms, from 8:00pm on Saturday evening to show us what you can do. All musicians, poets and writers are welcome. Please register your intention to participate by email to



We care for the place we live in and the planet we live on. Please show you care too and put any rubbish in the bins provided.


DAF is easily approached on foot, bicycle (racks beside the Energy Centre) or bus (routes 25, 6 or 11). If you are coming by car please park in the visitors car park beside the Osbaldwick village entrance – visitor car parking elsewhere on the estate is very limited.


Members of DAFT, the DAF Team, will be around throughout the festival, helping set things up, stewarding and so forth. They will be wearing sky blue tabards printed with the festival logo. Please ask them if you have any queries on the day.


Funding for DAF has been provided by DPAC, for which we are very grateful. These funds help us with performers fees, materials and hire costs enabling us to make DAF freely available and accessible to all. To help us make DAF a sustainable and repeatable event we respectfully ask that you give generously at the several donation points you will find around the festival.

Supported by DRA (Derwenthorpe Residents Association) and CAN (Community Action Network). Funded by DPAC (Derwenthorpe Partnership Advisory Committee).


ARM tomorrow (Wednesday) evening.

Our next ARM is tomorrow evening. Among other things, we’ll be talking about the heat price review which happened last week. And we’ll be talking about Ukraine, too.

Details, as usual, at

The meeting will be on Zoom again – check the web page for the link. The meeting will be recorded to help the minute taker, but the recording will not be made available for viewing.

We’re doing this online mainly because the Energy Centre room was unavailable, but also have you seen the COVID case rates going through the roof again? Of course, it doesn’t seem to be as dangerous these days – if you’re properly vaccinated and if you’ve no particular vulnerability  – but there’s a lot of it about!

Minutes of the last meeting are available on the web site, and we’ll post some additional papers before the meeting.

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Derwenthorpe Landscape Strategy

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Snowdrops and willow

The nature group had a busy week last week! On Wednesday 23rd February we helped the JRHT gardening team plant 7000 of 10000 snowdrops in the green on crescent park and around the oak tree on the LAP on Seebohm. They’ll surely look wonderful next winter. Then on Thursday some of us helped to coppice the willows around the swales on Stephenson. And what did we do on Friday? We tried our hand at willow weaving using the willow collected from the day before, in the energy centre where Adam gave us some basic instruction, helped by Tony both from the gardening team. It was fun but think maybe we all need some more practice!

For information on the nature group, contact


House guide additions

Ever wondered how those timers work on your cooker hob, how to turn off your fridge, how to unclog your dishwasher?

We’ve added user manuals, and spare parts sources, to our house guide.

Hey, in the original guide, we even have a user manual for your toilet!

These guides are all for appliances supplied with my house (on Lotherington Mews). If you have different appliances in your house or flat, please let us know, and we’ll update the page!

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Cycle path – scrub clearance by St Nicks

Over the next few weeks, St Nicks is organising some scrub clearance along the cycle path between Derwenthorpe and James Street. This is the beginning of a project to clear areas to improve bio-diversity and make space for wild flowers. Sessions are planned for Monday 21st February and Monday 28th February, from 9.30 am until 12.30 pm. St Nicks are working in co-operation with SUSTRANS who manage this section of the cycle path. All Derwenthorpe residents are welcome to join in with this activity, and help improve our lovely green pathway into town. Contact Maria Gill by emailing or phoning 07912432826 for more information. For more information about St Nicks, the nature reserve on our doorstep, visit the website.

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Fruit tree pruning workshops

The community gardening and nature groups have organised a couple of workshops run by Edible York to learn how to prune fruit trees. They will be on Sunday 27th February and Monday 28th February, starting at 10.30 am and expected to last for about two hours. If you’re interested, please contact Wendy at saying which one you’re interested in. Booking is essential as numbers are limited. No prior knowledge is needed. Bring secateurs, and a small pruning saw if you have one.

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Nature group work sessions

Our next sessions will be on Wednesday 23rd, Thursday 24th and Friday 25th February, starting at 10.00 am until we get tired and hungry which is usually between noon and 1.00 pm. The plan is to help the JRHT gardening team sow wild flower seeds on the central square area, plant snowdrop bulbs around the estate, and do a little hedge management. This may change, depending on the weather, availability of bulbs etc. You’re invited to come along for as long, as little, as often as you like, and everyone is very welcome. We meet at the energy centre, but if you join later just phone the number that will be in a window to find out where we are. Please bring hand tools and secateurs if you can, though the gardening team usually bring spares, and wear gardening gloves and appropriate footwear. For more information on these sessions, or anything else you might like to know about the nature group, contact Wendy by emailing