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Pictures: Nick Knowles helps turn Cody Dock green

PUBLISHED: 17:05 10 April 2015 | UPDATED: 17:05 10 April 2015

Berry Grisenti, four, helps to transform Cody Docks area into a green space

Berry Grisenti, four, helps to transform Cody Docks area into a green space

Archant

An abandoned dockyard isn't the first place you'd think to go to for a flower-filled walk.

Nick Knowles with Beeke Ropers and Chris BeardshawNick Knowles with Beeke Ropers and Chris Beardshaw

But a new project by the Royal Horticultural Society is aiming to turn grey areas into green ones.

Launched this morning at Cody Dock, the Greener Streets: Better Lives campaign aims to transform 6,000 spaces around the country in the next three years.

Television presenter Nick Knowles, who is also an ambassador for the society, was among the volunteers creating a flower-filled riverside walk along the Lea.

The Royal Horticultural Society volunteers get stuck inThe Royal Horticultural Society volunteers get stuck in

Some of them, such as Lindie White, had been at the site since early in the morning.

The 64-year-old from Kew arrived at 7.30am and helped with moving the boxes into position before adding compost and flowers.

Around 30 raised beds will be used to grow food and flowers along the public footpath.

The gloves are... onThe gloves are... on

Andrea Van-Sittart, head of communities at the RHS, said that Cody Dock was chosen as the launch site because it “epitomises what we’re trying to do.”

She said: “It’s an inner-city area with the skyscrapers behind it that’s being regenerated.

“We want people to get together and improve other areas like this.”

Green-fingered friends helped spruce up the concrete docksGreen-fingered friends helped spruce up the concrete docks

Garden designer Adam Frost consulted the team working on the dock’s transformation to ensure the plants and landscaping were suitable to the area’s needs.

He urged green-fingered people to get involved with transforming the borough even more.

He said: “Projects can range from planting along public walls, and revitalising bald roundabouts or neglected verges with nasturtium seeds, to using planters and raised beds to brighten up a concrete corner, or creating a community garden with friends.

The Royal Horticultural Society visited Cody Dock in Newham to help to transform the concrete area into a planted up green space. Berry Grisenti, four with Hayley MoncktonThe Royal Horticultural Society visited Cody Dock in Newham to help to transform the concrete area into a planted up green space. Berry Grisenti, four with Hayley Monckton

“While the proposition is simple, the possibilities are huge.”

In its heyday, Cody Dock was home to a number of factories employing 50,000 people.

An ongoing redevelopment project will see it become a creative area housing studios and a dry dock area for servicing boats.

The Royal Horticultural Society visited Cody Dock in Newham to help to transform the concrete area into a planted up green space. Lindie White, 64The Royal Horticultural Society visited Cody Dock in Newham to help to transform the concrete area into a planted up green space. Lindie White, 64

Simon Myers, who leads the Gasworks Dock Partnership working on the Cody Dock transformation, said: “Newham boasts more waterways than Venice, but is unknown to most Londoners.

“Since we began the project, the site has gone from being a dumping ground for 10ft-high piles of industrial waste, to a green, living haven.

“It is now about to become a tranquil riverside destination for thousands of visitors.”

The Royal Horticultural Society visited Cody Dock in Newham to help to transform the concrete area into a planted up green space. Rosa Brennan, eight with Nick KnowlesThe Royal Horticultural Society visited Cody Dock in Newham to help to transform the concrete area into a planted up green space. Rosa Brennan, eight with Nick Knowles

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