They are proposing to install a Community Herb Garden and Orchard on the site and aim to begin before the upcoming consultation with Thames Water on the 15th November. They hope that such an immediate and substantial voluntary effort from the community will demonstrate the strength of feeling about retaining this green space and create a symbolic barrier to Thames Water's proposals. Harry and Clare said, "It will also provide an ongoing focus for the campaign, which might play out over a long period of time, with the garden continuing to raise awareness and galvanise support for protecting this open space.
"It is also intended that the garden will go on to provide Deptford with a wonderful green facility long into the future, turning this often overlooked space into a valuable resource that is open to all to visit and to garden in. It is especially hoped that local schools will get involved and that it will become a place for young and old to share the satisfying activity of gardening, growing produce and supporting local wildlife."
To date the Community Garden has gained support from local landscape architects Roundfield with the offer of free consultancy and garden design, plus free website delivery from local designers Studio Raw. They also have the support of Deputy Mayor Alan Smith to use the site, advice from the council on setting up an accountable body to manage it, and approval of Father Paul at St Paul's.
The next step is to publicise the activity, invite public involvement and raise some money to help get things started.
IF YOU WANT TO GET INVOLVED:
1. VOTE FOR THE GARDEN AT THE EVELYN WARD ASSEMBLY THIS SATURDAY
The Evelyn Assembly will be allocating its funds at a public meeting this Saturday. Those attending will be voting on various proposals from other parts of Evelyn Ward. The Community Garden is asking for £500 to cover the cost of printing to publicise it as widely as possible and to kick off a fund for plants and seeds. The proposal needs people at the meeting to vote for the garden to get funding since it will be competing with many other causes.
Date: Saturday 17th September
Time: 10.30am for registration. (No vote if arriving after 11am)
Location: 2000 Community Action Centre, 199-201 Grove St. SE8 3PG
2. COME TO OUR OPEN MEETING TO HELP PLAN THE GARDEN
There will be a meeting (details of time and place to follow shortly) to describe the plans so far and to gather ideas from local residents about the best way to develop the garden. The meeting will decide upon a steering committee and fix a timeline for getting the garden installed. Everyone is welcome, keen gardeners and absolute beginners alike, whoever wants to help make the garden a success.