Martin Proffitt was the facilitator for the Byker Garden project in Newcastle, which completed last month.
Here, he outlines some of the imaginative plans from the group behind the Garden and how mambers plan to use their Sustainability Grant
“I was really impressed from the beginning as to how the group behind this project ran with the seemingly impossible task of developing the project further and gaining support and momentum from all as they did so.
Now that the main project is complete on the ground comes the real test in sustaining support and involvement of local people in its long-term development.
I recently received their sustainability grant application form and they have some great, innovative ideas which should really help push their project forward into the arms of the local community.
The working group behind the sustainability grant development have really embraced the need to involve all sections of the local community.
To give you a flavour, they will be engaging with local schools, residents and other groups in a range of activities which involve activities such as… deep breath… practical gardening and food growing sessions, wildlife education sessions hands-on with bird and bat box making, mixing history and wildlife with art, using food produced in the garden for pizza making (using an outside oven!), creating colourful planters and window boxes to take home, BBQ days, local talent show and events, summer workshops, poetry and music, seed collection, storage and use, decoration making workshops, apple celebration days… nearly finished!… Hallowe’en celebration, mini-beast hotel making, art workshops in the garden – being inspired by the plants and colour around them, tree day – tying in with the history of the tree and picnics.
The group is also applying for an extensive list of tools to ensure they are able to carry out the maintenance of the newly improved area.”