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Wish Hills

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Photos taken on Wish Hills by Paul Gorringe, Park Ranger

Updated and maintained by Christian Brodrick.

Wish Hills were created in the spring of 2013, funded by The National Lottery, Southern Land Services and Friends of Wish Park (FOWP). They were created to provide a habitat for wild flowers, which in turn would attract butterflies, bees and other insects.

The two hills, bisected by a gravel pathway, lead to two benches providing views across the park. A chalk area, created along the top of the hills, provides soil conditions similar to those on the South Downs.

The hills have been planted with local wild flowers and those observed growing include:

comfrey, borage, white and pink campion, cowslip, poppy, oxeye daisy, wild carrot, buttercup and birdsfoot trefoil.

Butterflies seen on the hills have included skippers, painted lady and white letter hairstreak (this being on the endangered list as it lives in elm trees).

The hills are maintained by the volunteers from the Community Veg Garden with the help of the park gardener & ranger. The grass is strimmed in spring and autumn and then removed, helping to reduce the richness of the soil, creating conditions which wild flowers favour.

A rope ‘fence’ was installed round the base of the hills to indicate their need for protection. This was removed in 2016 as it was rotting and is due to be replaced shortly.

Thistles, nettles and dock need to be frequently culled as they can dominate the other wild flowers. Spring bulbs have been planted around the base of the hills, and more wildflower seeds, including yellow rattle which helps to reduce the vigour of adjacent grass, have been sown each year.

When the elephant sculpture was built in the children’s playground, the excess soil was used to extend one of the hills, and this too was planted with yellow rattle.

Last Updated By Christian Brodrick On 25/04/17



WishFest 2017

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This year’s family fun day will take place on Saturday 8 July 2017.

Come along on the day or even better can you help?

We need:

  • Volunteers to help in the planning and on the day
  • Raffle and tombola prizes
  • Entertainment
  • Activities for children
  • Loan of equipment such as tables, gazebos, sports equipment
  • Anything else you can think of to help.

Just contact Caroline using the form below.

wishfest-facebook-cover Facebook size

Elephant sighted at Wish Park

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2016-10-17-15-35-14Architectural collaborative Threshold, Friends of Wish Park and Brighton & Hove City Council are pleased to announce The Wish Park Elephant – a new sculptural shelter designed and built at Wish Park for the use of children and families who use the play area.

The new structure has been designed in honour of an elephant said to be buried in the park. It is believed the elephant – part of a travelling circus – sadly died there and was laid to rest in the grounds. The design by Brighton architects Chalk Architecture, led by Paul Nicholson, Jeremy Diaper and Joe Giddings represents the rib cage bones of the animal and provides a welcome shelter and seating.

The eye-catching construction includes glulam wooden ‘ribs’ – a strong, light, durable material – and is partially clad with recycled pier decking, which are also used for the bench. Covering the structure is a series of haiku-type and two-word kenning poems about elephants, laser-etched directly into the wood. The poems were written by the children who use the playground and designed by local designer Richard Wolfströme who ran workshops with the young people to harvest the original material.

A truly collaborative community project, the work involved Friends of Wish Park, members of the community and Brighton & Hove City Council.

Councillor Gill Mitchell, chair of Brighton & Hove City Council’s environment committee said: “This new sculpture will be a very popular addition to Wish Park, providing much needed seating and shelter. It’s lovely to see how the whole community has got involved to help design the shelter and keep the Wish Park elephant legend alive.”

The official opening will take place on Saturday 29 October at 12 noon – all are welcome!

Credits and for more information:

In collaboration with Friends of Wish Park ( and Brighton & Hove City Council (

Design: Chalk Architecture (

Workshops and narrative design: Richard Wolfströme ( as team members of the Threshold Collective

Structural engineering: QED Structures (

Construction: R J Dance and Aaron Robertson (

Funding: Brighton & Hove City Council, Nuffield Hospital ( and developer contributions

Photography: Jim Stephenson ( also part of the Threshold Collective

Table top information Wishfest 2016

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WishFest – Tabletop sale

If you’d like a table at WishFest you can pay on the day.
It is £10 for a 6 ft table top (bring your own table), gazebos and larger pitches will cost £20.

You can drive in (very slowly and carefully) from 11 am on the Saxon Road side of the park to unload. Vehicles must be out of the park by 12 noon.

There are no electricity points left as they have all been allocated.

There’s a different arrangement with commercial food stalls who pay a percentage.

Please message if there are further questions.

Raffle Prizes for WishFest 2016

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A huge thank  you to everyone who has donated prizes for our raffle this year. We will be selling tickets at WishFest on July 9 2016.

All the proceeds from the raffle and WishFest will go to the Friends of Wish Park who are raising money for the improvement of Wish Park for the park users. The tickets will be drawn during the day.

Sainsburys, Portland Road  – 2 x  £20 vouchers

Ackerman Music, Portland Road – Ukulele

The Hive Café, Stoneham Park – coffee and a cake of your choice

Wish Park Surgery –  £50 cheque

Coop, Portland Road – £30 voucher

Hair Retreat Hove – free haircut and blow dry

The Cut Throat Barber Company – free haircut and shave at Hove or Shoreham Shop

Down to Earth Shop – Baby lotion and body cream

Tesco, Boundary Road – £20 voucher

HealthLink – Boundary Road – bottle of ginger drink

Boots, Boundary Road – Beauty Box

Lagoon Watersports, Kingsway – £50 voucher

Ocean Sports-Surf Shop, Kingsway – Two tee-shirts and a rucksack

Big Beach Café, Kingsway – £10 voucher

BP/M & S station, Kingsway – Hamper with 6 boxes of Toblerone and bottle of Prosecco