The Secret Garden Group is turning a hidden area of St Leonard’s Church grounds in Hove into a community allotment and garden for the whole community to enjoy. The team of volunteers has made amazing progress since the project started in February 2013. Working with the church, the area behind the church is being transformed from an unloved piece of waste ground, once a memorial garden where people could sit in quiet remembrance. Already in place are a number of raised beds, planted with a vast range of fruit and vegetables, many of which started to bear fruit last autumn. In addition, there is a working beehive and colony, a pond has been dug out and a herb garden established. When the garden is complete, the raised beds will have wheelchair access, there will be a greenhouse for growing tomatoes and other salads, a BBQ area and a wild wooded area with willow structures that local children will enjoy. “We hope that, once again, it will be somewhere where people can sit peacefully and reflect,” says Secretary Joi Jones. “It’s a great place to learn about food and how its grown, as well as a place to meet other members of the community and share knowledge and ideas.” Joi says the garden has changed her life and she is now studying for a horticulture qualification.
Click here to see The Queen’s 90th Birthday celebrations at the Secret Garden.
The Secret Garden received a grant from Southern Water to help pay for the development of the pond, some wooden sleepers to build raised beds with disabled access and to develop metre-wide paths, also to enable disabled access.