In partnership with the Aldingbourne Trust, Bognor Regis Library is creating a community garden space for everyone to enjoy. The project has been supported through National Lottery funding, by local volunteers, corporate support from Southern Water and Outside Interest, and with help from the people that the Trust supports with learning disabilities and/or autism.
Those who have been involved in the project recently gathered together to celebrate what they have achieved. Lisa Palmer the community garden project coordinator at the Aldingbourne Trust said “Thank you to everyone for your help and your ideas in creating this community space. We are so proud of the garden we have achieved together and we are so proud of you for showcasing your talents in a way that will benefit everyone”.
The garden creates an inclusive environment for people of all abilities to enjoy and relax in, and will also host activities by the library for children and for people living with dementia. The garden furniture and planters have all been made by the Wood Recycling team at the Aldingbourne Country Centre, creating peaceful spaces to sit and gardening areas that are accessible to all.
“The garden is here because of you, it’s wonderful for you to see what you have been working on to be pulled together. It has brought a breath of fresh air to this community area” said Lisa.
The artwork painted around the garden has been created by the Trust’s Creative Arts students from Aldwick Road. Where they have created a giant bookcase and included characters from Wind in the Willows and Alice in Wonderland.
Sue Livett, Managing Director of the Aldingbourne Trust said “It’s amazing! Everyone loves what you have achieved. You have created something for the community which will be here for years to come”.
Visit the Trust’s website to find out more about their involvement in local community projects and to for more information about their award winning charity that supports adults with learning disabilities and/or autism to live independent lives www.aldingbournetrust.org.
On Wednesday 17th July the long awaited library community garden began to take shape. A very willing group of volunteers from one of the project’s funders, Southern Water, volunteered their time to get the project under way. Other funders include National Lottery (Awards for All) and Fonthill Community Foundation.
The volunteer day is the first of many planned by the project lead Aldingbourne Trust who are spearheading the project. The project aims to provide the community with a safe space to relax and enjoy and also for people to garden for those without their own gardens. The library has been kind enough to grant the Trust a licence for use of the garden and it is hoped that more and more people will visit the library as a result
The volunteer day was the culmination of 2 years planning and signified a momentous day. The temporary Garden Coordinator Lisa Palmer said “It’s great to be finally making progress!” A team of eight staff from Southern Water completed lots of hard work despite the punishing temperature including digging beds, sanding picnic benches, lots of weeding and pruning and preparing the fence for painting.
The design has evolved from a community feedback exercise that was carried out in November 2018 and most of the suggestions such as raised beds and benches has been incorporated. It will be fully accessible with wheelchair accessible raised beds and the planting scheme will have a sensory element to it.
The project has thus far been received well by local businesses and the following local businesses have provided their welcome support including Covers, Chalcroft Nurseries, Outside Interests and B&Q Bognor.
We have further community volunteer days planned on 14th August and 17th August when planting will get under way – another significant milestone in the project’s timeline. It is hoped that the garden will be up and running by the end of August. Once the garden is up and running regular gardening sessions will be scheduled for members of the community to help maintain the garden. If you are interested in volunteering, at any stage of the project please email firstname.lastname@example.org