Activities at Hillside Dams have been curtailed for some years by the lack of adequate security and the deterioration of facilities. With time we hope to restore the area, improving on what was once there and building new facilities so that the range of activities can be expected to grow.

Currently several activities can be enjoyed:

  • Walking.
  • Bird watching.
  • Fishing.
  • Cycling (mountain bikes only at this point as the tracks are still to be repaired!).
  • Picnics & braais.
  • The women’s and youth groups of several Bulawayo churches also on occasion use the large open areas for days of refelction.
  • On occasions when the tea room is opened, limited refreshments may be available.

In future we hope that we will be able to add:

  • A secure Trim Track. This was present but needs to be redesigned and reconstructed.
  • Camping. The old Boy Cub camp will be restore for use by Scouts, Cubs, Girl Guides and other youth associations, by schools and possibly even tourists and overlanders.
  • The old tearoom at the Lower Dam will be restructured to become a restaurant.
  • Near to this commercial operation it is envisaged that a small meeting room with the relevant facilities will be erected for use by businesses and NGOs. After hours various amateur societies and associations such as the Boy Scouts will be encouraged to use it.
  • Also near the restaurant we envisage an open multi-purpose thatched structure for use for meetings and periodic “morning markets” where people will be able to sell home produce and/or craft items.
  • Nearer the Upper Dam there is nature amphitheatre set amongst the rocks alongside the main path. We hope to develop this into a more formal location with simple raked seating and a speaker’s area. This we hope will be used for theatre, recitals and book launches – sorry no politicians here!
  • Wedding Photographs. We hope to create a pleasant and secure area where people can have their wedding photographs taken against a backdrop of some interest. Several locations have been mooted but we require a clean, easily route so not to spoil those heavenly white dresses!
  • An educational trail. Designed with primary schools in mind this trail will take in both natural and human history. It is hoped that it will dove-tailed with the differing requirements of various school syllabi and that schools from across Bulawayo will be able to use it. The trail will have simple, non-intrusive markers which will be reflected in a teacher resource book which will be precirculated to all schools who book to come along.
  • A simple historical display of the area and Bulawayo in general will be erected at some accessible, but safe location. This will be presented in all three official Zimbabwean languages to be as inclusive as possible.
  • A small area will be developed into a representative Botanical Garden to reflect the diversity of trees which grow in western Zimbabwe. Type specimens of several such trees not indigenous to the immediate area are already there, planted by someone with this idea in mind sometime in the past. These will be added to and the trees will be labelled.
  • Further braaing and picnic spots will be developed at different locations.
  • Ultimately a series of nature trails into the less developed southern half of the property will be developed. These will focus on a variety of natural and human features by way of non-intrusive signs and a booklet. The ultimate aim is that this section is fenced off and has in addition safe, small game animals reintroduced.

Again should anyone be interested in assisting in any way please with these or any other projects please contact us. Many of the plans will otherwise remain pipedreams as we prioritise basic restoration work; the budget of the Trust is sadly limited