Digging deep to offer fresh veg

A community allotment is being developed at the Railway Village. Pictured are Amanda Adams, Sean Haines and Anna Komar

A community allotment is being developed at the Railway Village. Pictured are Amanda Adams, Sean Haines and Anna Komar

First published in News Swindon Advertiser: Photograph of the Author by , @Michael_Benke

THE residents of the Railway Village will soon be able to eat fresh produce grown just a few metres from their front door.

Locals, with the help of the Edible Incredible Movement, started work on the land in front of the community centre earlier this week.

Previously the site was overgrown with weeds and thorns but the team from Edible Incredible have helped to transform it and soon they will be growing leeks, runner beans and radishes, among other things.

When it is grown the food will be used at a luncheon club aimed at helping the elderly residents living nearby.

However, anyone is welcome to get involved with running the club and cooking the food.

The group from Edible Incredible is led by Kathryn Hay who wants the garden to benefit the whole community.

She said: “At its core, it’s about getting the community involved with planting edible foods in places where you wouldn’t think to see them.

“By making healthy food available, we also hope to make people a bit healthier too.”

The project is being overseen by the Mechanics’ Institution Trust, which runs the community centre.

Sean Haines, who is the community development co-ordinator, said: “When we took management of the community centre from the council in February, we looked at the front garden, at the bracken and thistles and said ‘that needs to go’.

“Our front garden is the gateway to the Railway Village. With thousands driving past it along Faringdon Road we wanted a better welcome.

“Thanks to some very patient volunteers, the last few months have been about getting it to a place where we can do something productive with it.”

“Edible Incredible is a project which aims to help people grow fresh produce and eat more healthily.

“I was introduced to them by Swindon Council’s Locality Facilitator Frances Barrone,” said Sean. “The group needed somewhere to grow, and we wanted a more welcoming frontage that belonged to everybody.

“We’re looking to set up a luncheon club for the Railway Villageand possibly cookery classes thereafter.

If we can use some of this veg in the meals, then that’s fantastic.”

Daniel Rose, the chairman of the Mechanics’ Institution Trust, said: “Having a practical connection with our food and environment is vitally important, particularly in such an urban setting.”

  • If anyone is interested in attending a luncheon club or cookery classes, contact Sean at sean@mechanics-trust.org.uk or call 01793 420649.

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