After a month of digging and shovelling, the Growing Together site in Cross Green was looking even worse than when the project was started! Could it really have looked so rough and be producing vegetables by the Autumn, must have done – the pictures can’t lie!!
Cross Green is one of the most deprived areas of Leeds with worse than the national average in the indices of deprivation, with adults and children having poor diet and lifestyles, poor educational attainment, lower than average life expectancy and above average long term unemployment. The area also has a large number of people living alone which, when added the poor transport links into the city, means a high level of social isolation. ‘Growing Together’ was launched in 2014 by the community as a small project to create a communal garden space on an unused bridge. By the start of 2015 it had evolved into an ambitious project to transform land alongside the railway from a derelict eyesore into a productive growing space.
A month of digging and shovelling had though paved the way for the erection of the polytunnel. All hands were on deck so to speak to set out the base and start to erect the skeleton across which the polythene would be draped.
If you don’t follow any other bit of the Feeding Body and Soul project, please do try to follow the Growing Together story. It is a truly inspiring story for all of us about the resilience and community spirit in Leeds – permaculture and people coming together to make special things happen.
A Date For The Diary – April 29th 2016
Working with Cross Green Community Group and Hyde Park Source, I have been successful in obtaining financial support from Leeds Inspired, a part of Leeds City Council, and through which we are staging an exhibition of photographs of the Growing Together people.
The exhibition opens on April 29th in St Hilda’s Church in Cross Green Lane where we will be be joined by Hilary Benn, the local MP and Shadow Foreign Secretary. The formal opening will be part of a short workshop on community development running from 2:00 pm to 3:30 pm and exploring community development through growing.
Full details can be found in News and Views on the Home page. Do come and join us if you can at some point – see the evidence that vegetables grew here in 2015!! You should even go away with a free newspaper!
[Double clicking on any of the images below will open up that image up in a slideshow format. You can then run the slide show using ‘left’ and ‘right’ buttons. Personally I prefer to go also to full screen having opened the slide show – F11 on my PC, don’t forget to get out of full screen is the same button , not ESC!]