A meeting with local social enterprise garden designers Urban Growth at last summer’s TRA Network event gave Caldwell Gardens residents the chance to share ideas about creating community spaces outdoors. The result is a new communal garden. We talked to the TRA’s Michael Turner (Chair) and Georgina Schueller (Secretary).
“Residents wanted the bars that stopped the space being used as a playground, taken away. Urban Growth recycled some into a pergola for climbing plants. They really thought about the planting scheme to include sensory elements – scent, colour, shape and texture – giving year-round interest.
“A community planting day has brought families and neighbours together. People often come out on their balconies to talk when we water the garden, and new people have joined us.
Residents said “Great to see life brought back to the square. The children loved getting stuck in.” “We will enjoy it when we see everything growing.” And (from someone especially excited about the gooseberry bushes) “Great Jam!”.
“Next steps? Edible Living food growing learning sessions start in May. Seats have been built into the planters, and we’d like to get a picnic table here to make it a social space as well. Let’s inspire people to plant their own gardens and balconies. Maybe we’ll start planting around the new outdoor gym too. We’d love to get an outdoor fitness programme going and get involved in outdoor learning.
“We’ve achieved some big changes for our community, and we want more people to benefit.”
- If you’d like to talk to Urban Growth about Edible Living food growing schemes contact UrbanGrowth.London firstname.lastname@example.org
- If your TRA would like a Wednesday Walkabout for residents to meet Housing Management and talk about services on your estate, contact your Area Housing Office