A project to revamp the popular Staveley Camp in the forested foothills at the base of Mt Somers has received a cash injection of $70,000.
The camp hopes to raise $350,000 for the revamp, which will include upgrades to the facilities and a refurbishment of the hexagonal buildings.
The $70,000 grant from the Mid South Canterbury Community Trust has helped the camp hit the $120,000 milestone – enough to embark on the first round of improvements.
The plan is to upgrade the toilets, heating and water pressure over winter.
The camp hopes to raise enough money to get the planned refurbishments done over winter next year.
Staveley Camp’s forest care co-ordinator Gen de Spa said the camp was used regularly by meditation and craft groups.
Several of these groups had been coming to the camp for decades – and some of the members were now in their 70s.
The planned refurbishments would include replacing the bunk beds with bunks that would be at a more convenient height for seniors, she said.
Trust deputy chairperson Alistair Wing said the camp had been selected for a major grant because it attracted a wide range of users from the community, including youth and school groups.
The fact that revenue from the camp funded conservation work, the adjacent native beech forest, was another reason for the trust’s support.
The forest is one of the few remaining sections of flat land with native beech forest left in Canterbury.
“This place is pretty unique, with a special piece of forest attached,” de Spa said.
Staveley Campsite Committee chairperson Lindsay Jones said the camp almost closed about 10 years ago, but the committee had an injection of new enthusiasm since then and now had good momentum.
- By Sharon Davis