People in Nottingham are invited to join a national campaign to turn grey spaces into green ones. The Royal Horticultural Society ‘Greening Grey Britain’ campaign highlights how gardens and green spaces improve health and happiness – and encourages everyone to start with their own neighbourhood.
Last year, 49 groups from Nottingham received RHS awards to celebrate their efforts in improving their own area of the city. This year it’s hoped that even more people will join in.
One of those groups is SALTAR – Stockhill and Ladbrooke Tenants and Residents.
They have worked hard over the past seven years to create a community garden on Stockhill Lane.
The Chair of SALTAR, Angela Cairns, said: “The project started after a dilapidated community centre was removed from this patch of land and a few of us decided to have a go at creating a garden. Since then many more people have got involved and it’s become a beautiful and fun space for everyone to enjoy.”
They have organised gardening action days and a ‘Big Tidy Up’ involving police, neighbours and children. By working alongside Nottingham City Homes, Nottingham City Council and local councillors the site has been improved with perimeter railings, seats and litter bins. It’s now a buzzing well-used community space – complete with a scarecrow made of recycled materials and a bird table crafted from a dead fir tree. A wide range of flowers and vegetables are grown, some donated by neighbours.
Last year SALTAR received the accolade of an RHS ‘It’s Your Neighbourhood’ Level 5 award of ‘Outstanding.’ The garden has also been entered for a 2016 Green Flag Community Award.
Councillor Malcolm Wood, Chair of the Nottingham in Bloom Working Group, said: “Greening Great Britain is a national campaign but it starts on your own doorstep, encouraging
people to work with friends and neighbours to brighten the area in which they live or work. The benefits of gardening to physical and mental health are well known and creating more green spaces can only make Nottingham a better place to live.”
A wide range of groups can join in, such as streets, sheltered housing complexes, Friends’ groups from local parks, Neighbourhood Watch schemes, community gardens and churches. All will have the opportunity to receive an RHS ‘It’s Your Neighbourhood’ award, with assessors visiting the sites in July and August and certificates presented in the autumn. Nottingham groups that participate report a better environment, improved community spirit and pride in the area and a reduction in anti-social behaviour.
More information is available from Nottingham in Bloom on 0115 8764985 or firstname.lastname@example.org. It’s free to enter.