The Community Centre recently received a welcome boost with the news that the charity has been awarded a Keep Wales Tidy, Local Places for Nurture, Development Package. This award was very welcome in view of the Centre’s long-held vision of the site as a space for cultivation and food growing.
The award comprises a package of support that is particularly suited to the Victorian building with its imposing roof and hardstanding (former playgrounds). It includes among other things, sleepers for raised beds, soil, native trees, wildflower turf, and something that really excites us: two SuDS Planters – which are free-standing planters, engineered to manage rainwater run-off. The substantial roof of the former school building which houses the Centre collects a huge quantity of water and we are eager to utilise it on site, in our planting and growing, rather than allowing it to contribute to localised flooding of sewers.
What we witnessed throughout the coronavirus pandemic is that the garden had a life of its own. It encourages people to stop and look. Visitors are able to pick whatever is growing, water plants, watch the wildlife and take home any excess produce left by growers for sharing. We came to appreciate its value as a nurturing environment for young and old alike and as a natural habitat and a valuable resource for learning and sharing skills.
The current situation has taught us that people need to look to each other for simple sustenance and support. To this end the Centre is dedicating resources – time, space and skills – to cultivating more of its outdoor space for the purposes of looking after our local environment and preserving food growing skills.
The Local Places For Nurture package is hugely beneficial to our plans for sustainable development, and come September we will need more volunteers to help us carry out the work. You are welcome to join us.
We would like to take this opportunity to inform you that the Community Centre is planning to reopen in early September – in a cautious, staged manner which is covid-secure.