We plan to transform space in a neglected and overgrown corner of Wyck Gardens, Lambeth, creating an extension of our existing Forest Garden. We have identified this specific corner of the park as being neglected, overgrown and used for anti-social behaviour like littering, drinking and urinating. We have heard from local residents how for many years this has been a dark and undesirable area of Wyck Gardens. The main reason being its closed off nature. By opening it up and letting in more light and access we hope to address these longstanding issues.
We will sensitively clear the space of rubbish and add bird boxes, bug hotels, signage, composting bays and define and lay mulch pathways. We will plant apple trees and other plants and shrubs to attract birds, and increase shade, and use water retaining mulch to build resilience against climate change. We will reach out to engage the community, particularly the younger generations, in four seasonally focussed participatory workshops. As people get involved and see the changes they can make in their community spaces we believe they will be encouraged to take more responsibility and ownership to protect the space for the future.
This is an extension of our work at Loughborough Farm a community food growing project. The Farm Co-ordinator is a horticulturalist and gardener highly experienced in volunteer management and development. This project is led by one of our volunteers who has a Level 3 Certificate in Community Orcharding. We are working with Friends of Wyck Gardens and have support of local MP Helen Hayes and Lambeth Parks department. The Farm planted the initial fruit trees in 2013, then more were added with support from social enterprise Urban Growth. The Farm have continued to be involved in the care, maintenance and planting. Each year we run an Apple Day, with over 50 local people in attendance.
|2 Wheelbarrow@ 80 each 2 spades@25 each 2 forks @25 each 2 rakes @15 each 2 silky saws @30 each 2 tree loppers @25 each 20 gloves@4 each
|Timber for bird boxes/ bug hotels/composting bays/ screws/ nails and misc £200 2 hammers @10 each 2 screwdrivers@5 each
|2 Heritage apple trees @35 each 4 bags compost @8 each Selection of spring bulbs
|Signage /Art materials – paint brushes, paint etc Professional printing of sign
|workshop planning, coordination and facilitating 50 hours @£15/hour
|Refreshments for workshops & Apple Day Celebration
We will preserve and enhance this valuable green space increasing biodiversity and mitigating the impact of climate change. By engaging with local residents including children and young people from our local Adventure Playground, we hope to capture their enthusiasm and openminded attitude and increase knowledge and understanding of nature. The very practical nature of our four seasonally focussed workshops will encourage hands on participation and the learning of new skills. We will encourage a long term interest in biodiversity and habitat and ownership/maintenance of the site. Our impact on the 50 participants will include increases in: Access to Green space and sense of community belonging/ownership Connection with others Skills development Awareness of local natural resources Healthy outdoor activities Education and interest in new ideas like Permaculture Art and creativity We anticipate 25 people will continue to benefit after the project ends.
LJAG is committed to building a culture of volunteering in Loughborough Junction. We are volunteer-led by a board of nine trustees, most of whom have lived in the area for many years. Additionally, we engage over 100 volunteers in our projects every year, many with lived experience of long-term unemployment or mental ill health. We encourage and empower them to plan activities and develop our projects, for example at Loughborough Farm we say we grow people as well as food. Our projects promote social and community inclusion; skills development and support physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. Since 2013 our 700 volunteers at the Farm have contributed 12,850 volunteer hours, worth £175,142 at the London Living Wage. At the Café we have provided over 2500 free meals since the pandemic. We inclusively celebrate the cultural diversity of our community through food and estimate our annual social value return to be in excess of £168,157.