Den-building project is revived for Great Ballard schoolpupils

A housebuilder has been lending a helping hand to Chichester school children over the summer by supporting the revival of a project.

Sunday, 10th June 2018, 1:30 pm
Updated Tuesday, 19th June 2018, 2:32 pm
Emma Pledger (right) and the pupils at Great Ballard School starting work on their arbour, funded by Miller Homes Southern

Miller Homes Southern is helping pupils at Great Ballard school with building a den this summer.

A willow-clad wood structure known as the ‘arbour’ was built by students at Great Ballard school last year, and became unusable due to weather damage and being eaten by surrounding wildlife. Miller Homes Southern stepped up to help, donating £200 to help its youngsters restore the outdoors shelter in its Forest School facility.

This means that the children at the school will have an engaging project to undertake this summer, as well as a safe place to play and shelter outdoors.

Kim Willcock, sales director at Miller Homes Southern, said: “We’re thrilled to be working with the local community and are delighted we’re able to help such a deserving cause! The Forest School is a unique and wonderful resource for the children of Great Ballard – they’re sure to benefit from having a cosy place to sit outdoors and enjoy the surroundings.

“After speaking with the school and hearing about the project, we knew it was something we had to invest in. Creating safe spaces is a key priority for us, so we want to help these children have theirs too. We can’t wait to see how they get on.”

Emma Pledger, Forest School leader at Great Ballard School, said: “When I first brought the arbour into the school the children had so much fun turning it into a shelter, using sticks and willow to add to the framework. It looked beautiful, but sadly the nearby deer were also drawn towards the den and ate most of the walls! When storms blew in and damaged it further, it meant we could no longer use the structure.

“I can’t wait to start planning the project with the class and to restore our arbour back to its former glory.”

Close to the school is Miller Homes Southern’s Bader Heights development, which offers prospective buyers a number of three and four-bedroom family homes.

More information on Bader Heights and The Beeches, another local Miller Homes development in the region, is available from the sales centres, open Thursday - Monday, 10am – 5pm, or by calling 03331 305 230.

West Sussex homebuyers can also reserve a plot online using Miller Homes’ online reservations service. For more information on Miller Homes, visit

For more information on Great Ballard School visit