Abbots Way Leisure Gardens celebrate horticultural hub
Published Monday, 11 September 2017
Plot-holders in an Elmers End allotment are celebrating the opening of a new horticultural hub on their allotment site.
The new purpose built hall, which has kitchen facilities, allows allotment holders to stage local events and continue building links with other community groups, including local schools, promoting and building understanding of growing fruit, vegetables and other plant life. It replaces a deteriorating small wooden communal hut from the 1940’s.
Councillor Diane Smith, Executive Councillor for Adult Care Services and Public Health, who is also ward councillor for Kelsey and Eden Park officially opened the horticultural hall and has already also judged entries of vegetables, plants and homemade produce at the annual allotment awards.
Councillor Diane Smith said “The Abbotts Way Leisure Garden encourages the whole family to get involved in allotmenteering. Completion of the Horticultural building on this site will benefit not only the current plot-holders but also the local community, including people with disabilities, the older generation and school children. People will be able to learn about the importance of growing and the enjoyment and health benefits that this brings. The council has been delighted to support the Abbotts Way Leisure Gardens group and salutes their vision to share their site with others.”
Tim Pretty, Chairman of Abbots Way Leisure Gardens said, “In much the same way seeds are planted and then eventually transform themselves into a magnificent bloom, we are delighted to see this project come to fruition, which you might say is bloomin’ marvellous! Whilst all of our allotment plots are occupied, if someone wanted to understand about how our allotment gardens work, they can get in touch with us and we arrange a tour of our site.”
Also on the Abbots Way site is a compost toilet which was recently installed thanks to funding from the Big Lottery Fund. The £60,000 building project was largely funded with monies raised by the Abbots Way Leisure Gardens, including a £17,500 grant contribution from the council’s Community Fund. Much of the building completion work, including moving 40 tonnes of aggregate for the foundations, was carried out by the members of Abbots Way Leisure Gardens, saving an estimated £100,000 of costs.
There are 145 allotment plots at the Abbots Way Leisure Garden site with over 50 similar sites across the borough, managed in partnership by idverde, with limited availability at some sites and with all plots occupied at Abbots Way. Interested people are advised to seek further information about plots by visiting http://www.balgf.org/
- idverde are responsible for a broad remit both managing all of Bromley Council’s wide range of parks, greenspaces and countryside sites and also providing grounds maintenance services for parks, recreation grounds, outdoor sports, countryside, cemeteries, allotments, floral displays and greenspace. As part of this, working in partnership with the council, idverde both support and champion allotment associations, including the Bromley Allotment and Leisure Garden Federation (BALGF), which all allotment associations are members of.
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