Young or old, we know that there are so many people giving their time to make community gardens run smoothly and effectively. Now’s your chance to show how you value them and to say ‘Thank you’ to them.
Loughborough Farm kept going throughout the pandemic thanks to the loyalty of a group of volunteers , overseen by farm coordinator Emily but Heather, Ophelia, Migle, always Anthea , with due, Becky et al how on earth in apandemic could you ask us to choose one , thanks to all who kept this vibrant, project alive ..
Annick has been a stalwart of the Windmill Gardens park growing spaces, flower beds and planters, herb garden, new terraced garden, fruit bush areas, wildflower strip and culinary herb bed. She has been instrumental in improving many areas of the park both the food growing spaces and also the flower beds since the formation of the Friends of Windmill gardens in 2003. She regularly donates vegetables grown on her own allotment to local foodbanks as well as leading monthly gardening workshops in Windmill Gardens. She also raises funds for the parks group by selling produce at our windmill open days. She is a dedicated gardening volunteer and a great supporter of Brixton Windmill who constantly comes up with new ideas and plans for improving the park and in particular the food growing areas within Windmill Gardens.
The space in front of the flats in Challice Way was in a sorry state. just a big splash of concrete with few dead trees. we had two events there and transformed the place into a pleasant mix of trees and flowers and vegetable beds. we have plans to add benches and more space to grow vegetables..
Carey spends hours pruning, sowing and plant dividing – watering, painting and making – collecting, recycling and composting. Overlooking the garden, provides her with endless reminders of gardening tasks which need doing, but she gives of her time freely, nurturing our community garden for others to also enjoy. The garden has taken on greater significance during the pandemic as a social space for us to escape to – a safe space for relaxation, and especially for Carey as she has been shielding her partner. Being so photo shy has made it difficult for me to get images of Carey gardening, so I have decided to take pictures showing examples of her direct influence – making plant labels and other community garden signs, sowing poppies and other wild flowers, adding more colourful plants to our garden including sunflowers, creating a bird bath, painting and recycling furniture, tiling old table tops, making copper tubing structures to protect our beans from snails, trying out new plants like a loofa for the first time this year. Her enthusiasm in the communal garden has also spread to areas bordering the courtyard, and encouraged other residents to plant beyond their balcony. On behalf of Caldwell Gardens Estate residents, I would like to nominate Carey for this award. She is a stalwart of our small team of community gardeners, and has helped to create a space which showcases what can be done when someone so lovingly, and with such dedication, gets involved. She’s amazing ! Thank you Carey!
Sue has been involved in the garden from the start and comes whenever she can, to the organised sessions and popping down to keep an eye and water. She is most likely to say ‘I was at the garden this morning and…’ She keeps it tidy and well tended. She did a marathon seed planting session and everything she planted grew. She used her contacts to help with water supply from kind neighbours outside tap, she spots freebies and researches new ideas. Thanks to Sue we are growing loofah plants for environmentally friendly bathrooms on the estate! She is also artistic and developing plans to paint our car tyre planters and a mural. She is calm and friendly to everyone who comes. She is a mental health first aide and aware of people’s needs as well as the plants’ needs.
Dennis is growing tomatoes, pumpkins and spinach in the grounds of Stannard Hall, social housing next to Myatt’s Fields Park. He has tended the plot for several years, growing an abundance of vegetables and sharing it with the many people that live in the block.
Thorlands Gardens Club celebrates its second Summer Of Love Amazingly, Thorlands Gardens Club has choo-chooed along steadily since its inauguration in 2019 and its first Winter session in February 2020. Right now it is celebrating ‘a second summer of love,’ with the Summer Sessions. The Club is based in the old rent collection office, now known as Thorlands Gardens Clubhouse, near Elsinore House. The Club was initiated by Thorlands Tenants Management Society (TMO) in partnership with Camberwell resident and horticultural consultant Simon J Taylor. The idea of Thorlands Gardens Club was to bring back to use spaces neglected by time, and provide some safe spaces for learning about growing food and herbs, setting up an affordable market stall and creating some much needed local work. Then, believe it or not, the work did start In mid Winter February 2020 ! A team of die-hard residents and locals set about clearing the various spaces of about half an acre. They started with two unloved and shackled areas known as the kick-a-bout and the playground. They cleared spiny brambles, twiggy bushes and exposed the layout so a design and build could be envisioned. The gardens are now widely known by their newly coined names. The Walled Garden and the Forest Food Garden. The former has raised beds on legs mainly growing fresh produce and herbs and the latter is slowly becoming a fruiting garden for bio-diversity and humans a-like, as well as a green events space. A newly adopted area rests next to the garden building and is called The Clubhouse Kitchen Garden. Each space offers slightly different skill learning. Some light and some more heavy manual work, but all about high quality organic food production. The project is also encouraging media and digital skilled individuals to come forward and help with the design, branding and promotion of the Club. Sessions currently run on Tuesdays 10am until 1pm. And on Saturdays 2pm until 5pm. Please pop by and sign up or email. The Club also runs D.I.Y. Sundays where they build wooden troughs and beds. And during hot spells they run an evening watering rota . All by arrangement . So if you think you have the ‘green fingers’ or would just like some outdoor exercise come and safely re-socialise. Contact Simon for more information or to book, on ‘ email@example.com ‘ or Goodgym.org/Southwark for extra sessions on weekday evenings or Saturday mornings. Thorlands Gardens Club, The Walled Garden & Clubhouse, Elsinore House, Denmark Road, Camberwell, London SE5 9EJ.
Outdoor communal vegetation space which has been up and running for a number of years now. Inez started off as a newbie to gardening at the beginning of the pandemic and she has continued to spend her time tending to the gardens and growing a new range of fruit veg and herbs. Inez has also encouraged some of the youngsters when she is out tending to the gardens to get involved. In still being new to the whole process Inez tends to the vegetation most days and takes pride and joy in the entire area. Inez’s dedication is exemplary and she is always wanting to tell you about anything new she has planted and also speak of her wonderful meals that she creates out of her produce.
Tapping into the rhythm of nature is a beautiful source of comfort. It is a reminder that after winter comes spring and with spring, we have blossom. In our ever-changing world, gardening is a reminder that adversity passes and that nothing is static This February our wonderful volunteer Olga got out her gardening tools and began to sow the seeds for new growth and renewal. Olga’s generosity of giving her time and sharing her wisdom of the land has been the soul upon which our community garden has thrived. We are surrounded by concrete and yet Olga reminds us to be flexible…She uses old barrels and pots to grow our little paradise. The soil is nourished with her tenderness, and this means we have a delightful selection box of goodies growing. Our goodies range from Sunflowers to Apple trees and everything in between. Olga tells us that the rain has been problematic for the plants this year but due to her care the plants still grow. Over the last few months, members of our community stop to admire the small changes and growth. For a short moment of time, we can be outside our own heads and reconnect with the world around. From my office I hear the buzzing of laughter and friendships being developed. Soon we will be able to reap the benefit of Olga’s knowledge, time, and passion. Soon we will be able to cook the delights in our café. Soon we will sit down to have a meal with others, and we will talk, share, and laugh. Olga has tended to the growth of a magical little universe. A much-needed community resource that brings elements of joy after feeling stuck in the mud for so long. Thank you, Olga.
Hi my name is Christine Makhlouf. I am nominating Shaun T Molloy . The area that I have chosen to put through for this competition is on Cressingham Gardens Estate SW2 this is an area between the walkway space on Scarlette Manorway that he and I had been partially managing for some years. He is a keen gardener. During lockdown he volunteered to help me (whilst keeping suitably distanced from each other) to make this space into an environmentally natural/nature area. Him and another neighbour produced the planters from pallets. They have been painted and lined to keep the water in. He loves wild life and feeds the birds in his garden as well. He has also hung bird boxes and nuts for the squirrels. He was keen to make the area concerned as nice as possible and beautiful for those living on this walkway during the dismal times, and also for those passing whilst walking through the estate or walking round Brockwell park, which is adjacent to the estate. He has tried to include as many flowers that are benefical to wildlife with open flowers and wild flowers to make this not only look bright and cheerful but look beautiful as well as being environmentally friendly. He helped to set up the compost site that we have. He did most of the pruning of overgrown bushes, and helped me to remove lots of stones and weeds. He assisted with the planting and with supplying cuttings from his gardens and personally purchased lots of seeds that would grow this year. You will see by some of the photos that we have a large amount of poppies plus ferns, roses, etc. With the addition of the bird feeder he supplied we also have been attracting Dunnock, Finches as well as parrots and Jays. He also helps with the weeding, deadheading and watering of the large space.