The Firs


Education Futures Trust, the Hastings based family support charity, is taking their first steps towards developing The Firs grounds situated off Elphinstone Road. Plans for the old football ground site, which is currently unused, involve reclaiming the land to create a wide range of facilities for public and community use.


Development Survey

Please complete our short survey to have your say on the development of The Firs.  Your answers will help us shape the usage of the The Firs land and help us develop it for community use.
Create your own user feedback survey



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Project manager Paul Carter, who has previously worked on developments including the Stade Open Space, has been appointed to run the project. Initial stages will involve clearing the grounds and making good the perimeters, and it is hoped that the local community and volunteers will be encouraged to get involved. In particular, Paul is hoping to attract those with a wide range of skill sets, including gardening, landscaping, building, carpentry and groundworks.

Education Futures Trust do not receive any funding other than those raised themselves, and therefore rely on donations to fund support programmes designed to help families in need. It is hoped the Firs development will go on to achieve a sustainable income stream for the charity.

If you would like to register your interest in the Firs Development project, either to volunteer or to donate, please contact us using the form below.


The Firs Development mission;

  • Make use of natural resource
  • Utilise volunteering teams to support development and maintenance
  • Engage local residents and communities
  • Enhance natural land assets wherever possible
  • Provide wider use of grounds to Hastings and Rother groups
  • Be available for public and community use
  • Explore green energy provision
  • Develop a sustainable income stream for the EFT


Education Futures Trust have entered phase one of The Firs Development and are pleased to announce that some positive progress has been made in moving this project forward.

An area of unused scrub land, located to the north of the existing office block, is due to be cleared to accommodate self-contained storage units. These units will go on to form a series of activity hubs which, subject to final approval, will arrive at The Firs within the next few weeks. The developed area will also house a dedicated washroom block and benefit from its own entrance located on Elphinstone Road, giving direct access to the open spaces of the grounds.

Arriving as basic builds, the units will require some external improvement however, while also managing to compliment the surrounding area. Any ideas and feedback relating to the decor of the hubs are most welcome.


Local businesses support The Firs development – Wednesday 12th July 2017

Kevin Sinfield of A4 Architecture has kindly agreed to work on the The Firs planning design for phase 1 of the Education Futures Trust development of The Firs. We are delighted to have Kevin’s support with this part of the project, which builds on the Concept Document that he produced to support the original submission to the council. Alongside project manager, Paul Carter, Kevin has been busy working on plans to fit five storage containers onto a newly cleared area. The containers, which, subject to planning approval, should arrive on site in the autumn and will serve as activity and utility hubs.

Phase one of the development has been gathering momentum, with spaces being cleared and designated areas now allotted to community use, play areas, camping and events.  Hastings Direct has very kindly donated two teams of volunteers who will join The Firs team in September. Their challenge will be to clear further areas which could eventually be turned into an adventure playground.

If you would like to offer your skills as a volunteer, either in a group or individually, donate tools or make suggestions please contact us using the form below.

Supported By

Before and after clearance


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