A project which provides activities for people with learning disabilities is set to benefit following the publication of a book.

Ray Harris, an Ace Activities session worker for Voluntary Action Epping Forest, has researched and funded the publication of a book written by his mother Gwendoline Templeton on the history of Grange Farm in Chigwell. A contribution of the proceeds will go towards VAEF’s Ace Activities initiative.

The book took more than five years to complete following extensive research of Chigwell and Grange Farm from libraries and older local residents who have fond memories of the centre through the years.

Inspiration for the book came from the importance of the Grange Farm Centre to the community and how it served the public living in the metropolitan and Essex area in its hey day. Many people came from other countries and all over the world from the 1960s onwards to stay and camp there.

Epping Forest Guardian:

Gwendoline Templeton

The centre was closed in the 1980s and many people, including Gwendoline, came together to campaign to raise awareness of the importance of the centre and its future to a wider audience.

The Grange Farm Centre is now a 90-acre community facility and charity located in Chigwell and currently provides sporting, recreational and educational pursuits including playgrounds for local parents and children. Walkers and wildlife enthusiasts come from across Essex to explore the open facilities.

For more information on Grange Farm, visit www.grangefarmcentre.co.uk

Epping Forest Guardian:

Ray has researched and funded the publication of this book with assistance from John Price, who provided photographs and collaborated for the production of the book.

A total of 250 books have been published and 10 per cent of the profits raised from sales will be donated to Voluntary Action Epping Forest’s Ace Activities service which provides day activities for people with learning disabilities. Each book costs £14.99.

To purchase a copy of “The Battle for Grange Farm Centre”, email Ray at rayharris06@yahoo.co.uk.

For more information on Voluntary Action Epping Fotrest, visit www.vaef.org.uk, call 01992 910 701 or email admin@vaef.org.uk