Custom House allotment dug up for Crossrail

Prize-winning gardeners in Custom House will have to say goodbye to their allotment to make way for Crossrail developers.

The Green 16 allotment, off Victoria Dock Road, won third place in the Best Shared Garden Category in the East London Flower Show organised by the East London Garden Society at Newham City Farm, Beckton.

Due to a delay engraving the trophy, East Ham MP Stephen Timms visited the allotment on Friday September 28 to re-present the group with their award.

Growing a variety of flowers, fruit, and vegetables in recycled builder’s bags, the 26-strong group got together nearly two years ago but now they will have to move down the road as the land is needed to build Crossrail, a �16 billion high-speed rail link regeneration project.

Green-fingered Jeannie McQuaid, of Freemasons Road, said: “I am quite fond of our garden and I have made such wonderful friends. We all love it so much - this is a little haven to us.

“We all try to grow something different and we share all our produce with each other.

“We have lots of chats over a coffee every day, it is a wonderful meeting place and we all help each other.

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“I did not think for one minute that I would like gardening but I am into it along with the others in a big way.

“It will be very sad for us to leave as we all love this garden with a passion. I know on the day there will be a few tears when we have to turn our back on it.”

The Green 16ers will join a bigger garden community at the William Patten allotment in Leslie Road at the end of November.