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SOCIETIES NEWSAyrshire Heritage Volunteer makeshand-written Robert Burns findAn Ayrshire DFAS HeritageVolunteer working at the RobertBurns Birthplace Museum hasdiscovered a book with adedication on the flyleaf written inthe poet's own hand. The Heritage Volunteers werehelping the National Trust forScotland to prepare books andartefacts for storage when theexciting find was made. The Heritage Volunteer team isalso helping Ayrshire Archives withpacking records in preparation fora move to new premises.Societies NewsA snapshot of Society and Area activities across the countryEaling DFASvisits theBaltic citiesEaling DFAS members enjoyed avaried trip around the four Balticcapitals of Helsinki, Tallinn, Rigaand Vilnius. They explored theculture and architecture of thesefascinating cities and found theSoviet influence to be particularlyinteresting. In Tallinn, they visitedthe palaces and gardens of Peterthe Great and the award-winningart gallery, Kumo, with its collectionspanning three centuries ofEstonian art. The members had amemorable insight into life underSoviet occupation when theyvisited The Museum of SovietOppression in Riga and the formerKGB Headquarters in Vilnius. Otherhighlights of their trip includedseeing the ballet Bayadarein theVilnius Opera House and samplingmulled wine and gingerbread atHelsinki's Christmas festivities. Funding from Farnham DFAS ensured that 'incendiary' ceramicist TomBarnett could provide some fiery entertainment in August. Crowds ofchildren and adults had fun making the bricks for the 'bottle' sculpture aspart of the Message in a Bottleproject run by the West Street Potters. Aceramic fibre blanket was secured around the completed 'bottle' on theday before firing and became the temporary kiln. Firing began in earlymorning and by twilight the kiln was belching fire and smoke. When Tompeeled away the red-hot blanket at about 9pm the most dramatic sightgreeted all present and a great cheer rang out. It was a fitting end to afantastic summer project.A fiery show in Farnham58NADFAS REVIEW / SPRING trip to the capitalfor Reigate DFASReigate DFAS enjoyed an outing toSouthwark Cathedral andBankside in October with twoexcellent guides, one at thecathedral and one who took themalong Bankside. The group wasable to travel by train to LondonBridge and then walk to the sights,making it an eco-friendly trip too. REVIEW / SPRING 2010 59SOCIETIES NEWSUckfield pupils home in on craftUckfield DFAS donated £250 towards thecost of inviting local artist Carole Havard towork with the children at Framfield PrimarySchool in September. Over two days, thechildren worked in small groups to designand build a home by recycling householdmaterials and using modroc plaster. Their imaginative creations includedcastles, the Faraway Tree, a caravan, atower, a Celtic roundhouse, a futuristichouse, an igloo, a red tower, a train and aboat. Some of these constructions werelarge enough for the children to climb inside. The photograph shows the castledesigned by Reception and Year 1 childrenusing the framework from an old gazebo.They painted the walls and embroideredcross stitch on the banner. The children arepictured having a banquet.The Young Arts project ofMonmouthshire DFAS wasdelighted to fund a playgroundmural at an Abergavenny primaryschool, Ysgol Gymraeg y Fenni. Over several days, artist AlisonLudlow gave a workshop to agroup of pupils from the school'sEcology Society. The group'simaginative drawings includedMonmouthshire DFAS fundsimaginative playground mural subjects such as hot-air balloons,parachutes, the railway, a tractordispensing slurry and even a manwho had fallen into a bog -alltaking place in the landscape ofthe farms and hills around thetown. Alison painted their designson the wall, which the children hadprepared for her. She then put onseveral coats of varnish to helppreserve the mural. Since its launch in 2006, theMDFAS Young Arts project hassponsored various workshops inlocal schools and has reachedover 1,300 pupils. The photographshows Ysgol Gymraeg Y Fennipupils with artist Alison Ludlow (farright) and teacher Victoria Hoskinsin front of their mural. ??Animal magiccreated atDorset schoolAn exotic elephant is now the centre of attention at Pimperne First School in Dorset, thanks to a Young Arts grant from Wimborne and Blandford DFAS. The grant enabled staff to bringa creative theme to Year 4-and 5'sstudy of recycling, the environment and endangered species.A local sculptor was invited toenthuse the children and then tocreate a wire framework of thechosen animal -an elephant. Infact, the sculptor was sooverwhelmed by the children'sdesire to be involved that he hadto sneak in during the holidays tocomplete the framework.Pupils were then asked to takein toys they no longer wanted, andthese were used to 'flesh out' theframe. The result is an amazingelephant, now in danger only fromenthusiastic pupils who areanxious for a closer look!Many stories about Society activities are still being sentwithout accompanyingphotos. We encourage readersto always send in pictures.They make for a nicer lookingmagazine and give your storya much better chance of being featured. For details ofpicture specifications, pleaserefer to the information boxover the page.