News and Events

Here you will find all the latest goings on, these pages will be updated regularly so check back as often as you can.  
You can also find all the latest SPARK news and events on our Facebook page, where you can also take part in discussion and share information.  Click below for a direct link to our latest articles.


Archive SPARK news items can be found on the Southill Community page HERE
Community Litter Pick

THANK YOU to all who volunteered at a recent litter pick around our community, following several sightings and complaints of rubbish and dog mess in our area.  We really appreciate the time that you gave and to Dorset Waist Partnership who donated equipment for us to use.  We filled over 10 bags, a great effort.  

SPARK is looking into sorting some dog poo bins for the area.  Watch this space
Charity BINGO Night Fun

THANK YOU to all who came to our recent Charity BINGO Night held at The John Gregory, we raised an impressive £633!  We hope you all had a great evening and thank you also to the pub for letting us host this event on your premises.  Well played everybody!


What a great time we had at this event over half-term it was great to see so many join our lantern walk around the streets of Southill, thank you for braving the cold weather!  We had a walk-through ghost train, decorated tunnels (spooky!) and we also ran a competition for the best decorated garden/fence/wall featuring the properties of Southill.  Each entry was fantastic, a lot of time and effort went in to each one and it really added to the trail. We heard lots of talk about the figure behind the fence, the man on the chair, the clown, the people in the window, and the graveyard gardens.
Congratulations to  entry number 5 (the one with the clown) congratulations you won a Halloween hamper!

Check out this event in Dorset ECHO HERE

Our first coffee morning a huge success

Many thanks to all those who came along to our coffee morning at Emmanuel Church, we made a total of £111.29 for our charity!  We hope you all had a great time.

GOOD NEWS for our Play Park!

​We are pleased to bring you some very GOOD NEWS! Southill Play area is to be revamped with £45,000 worth of new equipment to be installed by April next year. There is also going to be work to improve the drainage of the site. Many years of campaigning by SPARK and the support of WPBC Councillors and Officers has brought us this great news. We have many other ideas to improve community facilities in Southill and some great new volunteers so we will continue with our fundraising and plans. We are working with WPBC to develop a new future for the old KidsRUs site and we hope to have news in the not too distant future.
SPARK 'Good Citizens' Recognised 

Congratulations to two members of SPARK who were nominated and selected to receive the Good Citizen Award presented by the Mayor.  Pete Barrow was praised for his negotiations to keep the old Southill youth club building operational and Helen Lainsbury was praised for her fundraising efforts towards SPARK.

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SPARK Easter Egg Trail 

Our recent Easter Egg Trail event raised  £223.10 for our charity!  Many thanks to Sarah Polkinghorne and Helen Lainsbury for organising this fun event which involved a trail around Southill, with refreshments and easter crafts at our Wellbeing Centre.  Many thanks to all those who came along and took part in this event, we hope you all had some quality family fun. 

Money raised will go towards funds raised to improve our children's play park.


BBC Spotlight recently covered a story on our charity, filming around our park, Wellbeing Centre, our community buses and interviewing our Chairman Pete Barrow and committee member Helen Lainsbury.  It was a well received and very positive news item, if you missed it you can watch again here:

Children's DISCO

During February half-term SPARK provided a fun disco for primary school aged children, held at Emmanuel Church.  Many thanks to those who helped to organise and run this event, also to those of you who came along to support.  We are pleased to inform that we raised £316.33 for our charity, which will go straight to improving our children's playpark.
SPARK in the DARK Success!

SPARK in the DARK was a huge success, thank you to Helen Lainsbury of our committee for organising.  Over 200 people walked the streets of Southill with children carrying lanterns, in fancy Halloween dress including a treat at the end and a spooky story outside our Wellbeing Centre.  We hope that all those who came to this event had a super time and that it will become an annual event, raising money for our charity.  Many thanks Helen and also to the volunteers who enabled this event to take place, including paramedics (on standby!)

SPARK are very pleased to be supporting the new community bus service within Southill.  This service will run from the turning point at Radipole bridge, Lawrance Court, Southill Garden Drive, The Rise, Chafeys Avenue, Goldcroft Road, back of Marks & Spencers, town bridge, back of Debenhams and Asda.

Please contact Dawn 01305 779157 or 07970016851 to book a bus journey and arrange collection/drop off points (door to door service can be arranged, wheelchair friendly available).


Every Tuesday throughout August we held 'meet up' events within Southill park, with refreshments and items to purchase such as toys and books.  We also had toys and equipment for the children to play with, bubbles, tunnels and footballs.  The events were very popular and we raised £106.83 for our charity.  Many thanks to all those who came to these events and to Helen Lainsbury for organising.

Former Kids R Us building - tidy up project

Thank you to everybody who came along to help tidy the former Kids R Us building during the Easter holidays.  A special thank you to Portland Skips who donated the use of a skip, most helpful.  As previously stated, our charity hope to take on this building and use it to provide a youth club, wouldn't that be amazing?  We made a good start cleaning up the site, if you couldn't attend but would like to help don't worry there will be further opportunities very soon to get involved.  Watch this space and also our Facebook page. 

We also ran an Easter Egg Hunt on the same day for the children, raising £40.  Thank you to Abbotsbury Children's Farm, Lush Balloons, Asda and Belle's Cream Cakes who donated prizes.  
We need YOUR support to provide activities for young people within our community!

Thank you to those of you who came to our recent meeting to establish what activities young people (aged 10-16) would like to have within our community, as stated we hope to use the former Kidz R Us building, which would be very exciting.  Unfortunately the meeting wasn't very well attended, however we are hopeful that there is enough interest and support to get this going. If you have any ideas, can lend any time to help clear the building or would just like to know a little bit more about the project please GET IN TOUCH.  We would love to hear from you.

Further updates soon.

Thank you to everybody who came to support the recent 'Southill Fireworks' event, which we were so pleased to see back home within our community this year.  A huge well done to event organiser Jon Gabb and the many volunteers who made the event possible, what a fantastic display that they put on for us all to enjoy and what an incredible amount of people who came to watch!

The SPARK stall raised £40 for our charity, big thanks to those of you who donated and supported us and to the volunteers who ran it.  We had an super selection of over 60 prizes generously donated by local people and businesses.  Amazing!

You may have also spotted members of Evolution Dance, who's classes take place at our Wellbeing Centre, performing for the crowds - what an honour to have such talented children within our community. They certainly impressed their audience with 4 incredible routines, and some singing too!

Same again next year?!

Dorset Echo article on our Open Day 2nd September 2016

Dorset Echo have published a lengthy article on the opening of our SPARK Wellbeing Centre, with a large colour picture of Evolution Dance members.  Our open evening was a great success, with so many members of the dance school and community coming along to take a look at our building.  Thank you to those who helped and who made the effort!  We hope that you were impressed.

CLICK HERE for the full article.

Southill Fireworks are back!

We are extremely thrilled to hear that Southill Fireworks are back for 2016 on home ground back in Southill!  This event is extremely popular and SPARK traditionally hold a stall there every year raising money for our charity.  Please visit their facebook page where you will find more information.  
We need your donations to help run our stall this year - suggested items so far include soft toys, gifts, wine, unwanted presents, gift vouchers, entry tickets (anything that you would like to win yourselves).  If you can help, please get in touch at [email protected] we would be extremely grateful.  How much we can raise directly relies on the support of our community and your donations.  This event takes place in November, we will keep you updated as to donation drop off points, etc so keep an eye on this page.  Thank you for your continued support and we look forward to seeing you at the event!

Car Parking Petition

There have been a few articles recently printed within Dorset Echo relating to potential increases in car parking fees, including the introduction of evening charges and charging at some of our currently free carparks, including Southill. At a recent council meeting to which some of our committee members attended, these 'plans' were shelved pending consultation with the policy develoment committee in December.  It should be noted that these plans were part of a recent discussion and that no plans have been agreed or implemented, our Southill carpark remains free to use.  Our Chairman Pete Barrow has started a petition against such changes, please sign it and encourage as many others as you can to do so too. We could make a difference to any future plans relating to our carpark, the result of which would have a negative impact on our local businesses, school children and our community.  


There is also a petition available to sign at the Southill shops.  Thank you

16th July 2016 - SPARK Annual General Meeting

Thank you to those who attended our Annual General Meeting, below you will find our meeting minutes.