Signpost - Ellingham and Kirby Cane
The land that is now the playing field, had been used as allotments and was owned by Ellingham United Charities (EUC). Use of the allotments declined, coinciding with an increasing demand from the public for somewhere the children of our villages could play safely. In 1968 it was agreed that the allotment field should be leased by the Ellingham Parish Council from EUC (it is now leased by the merged councils of Kirby Cane & Ellingham).
A recycling area is near the main entrance (which also helps raise funds for equipment).
Volunteers have always played a major part in providing new equipment for the field. Below are photgraphs of a fund raising fete back in 1969
In 2015 the newly elected parish council decided it was time to repair and add to equipment. The school pupils and villagers were consulted, to find out what they really would like to see. The councils's Playing Field Equipment Committee started fund raising and money started flowing in from a wide range of charities, sponsors, companies and events. By 2017 almost £60,000 had been raised and a huge range of equipment installed - for all ages too! The playing field is now an important and very popular facility of our parishes.
In the Middle Ages* the area of the playing field was part of a large ancient common* which extended to Geldeston. The entrance to it was named, Bud Fengate* and the field behind Crossways, on the opposite side of Mill Road, was called Bud Piece* which had a windmill).
*Source: A chronology of Ellingham & Kirby Cane.
It could be said that, in some ways, the playing field is a victim of its own success, for the number of cars seeking to park there can be an issue; one that is shared by Ellingham V.C. School (on the opposite side of Church Road), so the current big project is to get a car park adjacent to Church Road and Mill Road, that will benefit both the school and playing field and make it safer for all. Plans are now being submitted to the district council.