Springhead – a rural centre for creative and sustainable living

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  Bank Holiday Monday 27 August, Open Garden, 10-5, café serving refreshments and light lunches. Admission £3.50, under 16 and Friends of Springhead free. Dogs on leads welcome and assisted … Read more


Springhead is delighted to announce that it has been awarded a grant under the LEADER funding body. Upon the death of Rosalind Richards – daughter of Rolf Gardiner and life … Read more

Friends of Springhead

The charitable work of the Springhead Trust – promoting sustainable living, organic gardening, the performing arts and environmental education for school children – would not be possible without the help and support of our ‘Friends’ and Volunteers.



Friends of Springhead, co-ordinated by Kate Partridge, is a group of people who support us each year by not only kindly donating £10 but also by supporting our many and varied events throughout the year. In 2016 these events included open gardens, book signings, ‘Life’s a Dream’ (Artsreach) and a rather wet, but very enjoyable picnic evening.  From the funds generated from our more than 100 members last year we were able to lay a new floor covering in the schools dining area, buy a large monitor for presentations and seminars and begin the reinstatement of the organic kitchen garden (look our for the large raised beds).

We are once again hugely indebted to our friends and volunteers, many of whom have given hundreds of hours of their time in order to help maintain the beautiful lakeside gardens and/or to help with the smooth running of our events.

By becoming a ‘Friend’ you would hear about forthcoming events first and be entitled to free entry to the garden on open days and discounts on various tickets.




Whether you would like to play an active or non-active role, Friends of Springhead is in need of your valuable support. Contact Kate Partridge on friends@springheadtrust.org.uk for more information on how to join.







Single Membership £10.00
Couple Membership £15.00


Single Membership £100.00
Couple Membership £150.00

To join the ‘Friends of Springhead’, please complete the application form and return it with your remittance (cheques made payable to ‘The Springhead Trust Ltd’) and send it to:

The Springhead Trust
Fontmell Magna
Dorset SP7 0NU

Application Form

Download our application form (PDF)



A big THANK YOU to all of the Friends of Springhead

Dear Friend

I am writing to thank you for another year’s support and to let you know what we have been able to do with the help of your kind donations.  The total sum raised by Friends’ membership and personal donations totalled more than £6,000 in 2015 enabling us to continue with the general improvement of the facilities for visiting schools, maintaining the lake side gardens as well as being able to undertake  a series of specific projects


This year some 520 children benefitted from visiting and staying at Springhead.  For many it was their first experience of spending an extended time in a rural situation.  Activities included drinking from the natural springs, a nine mile hike, river dipping, flower identification and bat detecting on night walks.  The feedback from the children in the form of thank you letters (some of which can be seen on the cafe/dining room wall) was wonderful and left us feeling that for some their visit was life changing.


A generous donation of several thousand pounds by a local individual has enabled us to renovate the wooden walkways and safety rails at the springs and mill race. The green oak was sourced from Gore Farm situated only a mile away on top of Fontmell Down allowing us to keep the environmental impact measured in ‘green miles’ to an absolute minimum.


In 2015 we have continued to improve the way we run Springhead so that it reflects the organic and sustainable ideals of the Trust.  As part of our aim to minimise our environmental footprint we installed solar panels which have reduced not only our bills but also our reliance of electricity produced using hydrocarbons and the all the associated issues of releasing CO2 into the atmosphere.  A second project of installing a hydro turbine is at an advanced stage of planning (to be completed in 2016) which will be able to take advantage of the all year round energy of the flowing water to produce electricity.  Meanwhile a feasibility study is being undertaken to assess the suitability of harvesting pond weed on the lake to produce biofuel and organic cattle cake.  The combination of all three of these projects could reduce our external energy requirements by up to 60%.  On a week to week level we have increased the proportion of local and organic produce used in the food served to schools and other groups as well as our improving our levels of recycling and composting of waste.


2015 has been one of our fullest calendars in terms of events and open gardens for many years.   The highlights were the recital performed by the Monteverdi Choir apprentices in March, the German youth orchestra from Berlin in June and the Miracle theatre’s Magnificent Three acted in front of a large appreciative audience on the amphitheatre by the lake in July.


We are currently fundraising for three small projects

  • laying a new floor in the children’s dining area £950
  • buying a 50inch monitor for presentations and videos £520
  • cleaning and refurbishing the curtains in the sitting room £280

We are hoping to exceed 100 Friends in 2016 and as soon as we have reached this target we will effectively have the funds for the new dining room floor.  We will also be collecting donations towards these items during our wonderful Christmas Fair – The Garden of Delights – at the end of November but if any of you know of any additional ways in helping us reach our goals for the three items above we would be interested in hearing from you.


On the 23rd November the Monteverdi Choir will once again be visiting and staying at Springhead. Whilst their stay is too short to arrange a full recital they have kindly agreed to having an invited ‘audience’ to come and see Sir John Eliot Gardiner putting the choir though a vigorous last rehearsal in advance of their performance in the Temple Church in London on 24th November.  There will be 12 complimentary seats for Friends to come and experience the wonderful voices in an intimate and informal setting.  Guests are invited to arrive at 6.45 for a glass of wine and the rehearsal will be between 7.00 and 9.00pm. Ring to reserve a seat.

Thank you all once again for all your support in 2015.