Acomb Methodist Church - ward grant report 2016-17

Published Wednesday, 11th October 2017

Acomb Methodist Church - ward grant report 2016-17

Acomb Methodist church received a ward grant from Westfield Ward in 2016-17 towards their community garden project.

A church representative involved in the project explains how the project took shape:

'We created a community garden at the rear of Acomb Methodist church from a piece of land that was previously a wilderness.
As well as tidying the space for the benefit of our immediate neighbours, we designed it to offer people a relaxing space to spend time in. In addition, we offer regular workshops and spaces within the garden for groups to adopt, which we hope will help to combat social isolation.

Age UK use the garden space regularly during their day club on Mondays and Wednesdays. Greenshoots are a blind and partially sighted gardening group which also meet in and use our garden. We have built them two high raised beds with dog rings for guide dogs.

We officially opened the garden to the public in September. All the community groups that use our building helped to make it a very successful occasion with a high turnout.
We want to use this opportunity to involve more of the community in the development and upkeep of the garden; infact three new people joined us at the last garden 'Upkeep Day' as a result of publicly opening the garden.

The garden is both a working garden and a quiet space, with various areas within the garden to sit and relax. There is a large heated log cabin, which is available to community groups, and a small summerhouse.
To improve accessibility, we installed ramped access for wheelchair and pedestrian use, and an accessible toilet at the bottom of the ramp which is accessed only via the garden. The garden also has Wi-Fi coverage!

Our garden is a facility for all community groups who use our premises and all our neighbours on Front Street.'

When asked what the group has learnt from the project, they responded:

'We managed the garden project ourselves to reduce costs but found that our timeline estimates were way too short; we did not allow enough time for weather interruptions and issues with contractor communications.'

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