The Flit Valley Discovery Centre

Also known as the Jack Crawley Memorial Barn

Flit Valley Information Panels

The Discovery Centre, also know as the Jack Crawley Memorial Barn, houses lots of interesting information relating to the history, geology and also celebrates local artists.

Click on each of the PDF's below for full details.

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Welcome to the Flit Valley

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Flit Valley History

A landscape rich in history

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Flit Valley Geology

History written in the rocks

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Green Spaces

Spaces for wildlife & people

The old tractor shed on the site

When the buildings department at Central Bedfordshire Council (CBC) came to look at the old shed they declared it as unsafe and said it would have to be removed.  But then the very helpful Lyndsey Bignal, the CBC site manager, said, “Don’t worry, we’ll have a new one.”

So we did a search for wooden barns on the internet and found the one which you now see on site – almost the same size and open front as the old one.  And after an application for £10,000 from Biffa Award, and even more money from CBC the new one arrived, from a company in Lancashire.

The Old Shed

The old tractor shed on the site was left by Silsoe College and when the Friends group was first formed we found it a very useful facility. We used it for shelter during work parties, for meeting school visits and other visitors – and as a base for occasional workshops. We had plans to refurbish it and use it as some sort of visitor centre.

Here you will find information on the old tractor shed and the Silsoe College period of occupation of the Moor.

The Barn Raising

The old tractor shed on the site.

The unloading of materials and cherry-picker at top of Brook Lane; and delivery of materials on site via local farmer, David Catlin’s tractor.

Beginning of assembly by the crew from Yorkshire, who lived in caravan on site for the 4 days it took to build.

The basic timber construction is finished and the roof fitted.

Filling in the sides and cladding the walls and their work is finished.

We learn to do brick-laying – taught by a local builder – and fill in the base.

We cover the interior walls with sterling board and an oak seat is fitted around the inside. The oak seat was supplied by Phil Candlish, of Oak Hill Joinery in Pulloxhill.

We receive a cheque from Aragon Housing for one of the information boards. The four Flit Valley Discovery information boards are installed.

It was while the barn was being built that people of the parish though it would be a good idea to name it after local artist Jack Crawley – who had recently died aged 92. The building has since been known as The Jack Crawley Memorial Barn.

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