Tommy Walsh helps open Forest Gate community garden
PUBLISHED: 13:48 23 May 2013
Former Groundforce star Tommy Walsh mingled with residents at the opening of a community garden.
The celebrity builder spent several hours at the launch of the Dorset Road Community Garden in Forest Gate. He was joined by Newham Mayor Sir Robin Wales, several councillors and about 200 residents from the area.
The event marked the culmination of a project that built a community garden on what used to be a derelict place.
Residents who set up the Dorset Road Community Garden Steering Group created the garden with help from Newham Council, conservation volunteers and an organisation called Groundwork London.
They built flower beds, picnic benches, a shed, wormeries and composters. The garden already features a pear and an apple tree, vegetables and herbs as well as 20 raised flower beds.
It is also designed to be an active, thriving community space, where residents can become self sufficient, introduce themselves to their neighbours, break down generational barriers, build new skills and increase their self esteem. It also offers opportunities for exercise, improving general health. Newham Healthy Hearts facilitated a series of workshops in support of the project.
Ken Styles, Dorset Road Committee Chairman, said: “This space was been derelict for over 10 years. There used to be abandoned garages which were pulled down and left a vacant space with no purpose. We realised things needed to be done and we just did them.
“The achievement at the site has been people doing different things and putting their heart and soul into it whatever it might be from acting as secretary to resourcing materials and building on site.”