BLOG: Updates for Friarn Community Garden in Bridgwater
Thursday 2nd April 2015
Rachael and Hannah worked to peg out and level the largest trench in section 1. Pete kindly made more pegs as sawing got progressively more dangerous with pulled muscles! Weather was pretty miserable but we made great progress. Also Rachael works like a machine **incredible woman** - we will be dreaming of the spirit level tonight...
Wednesday 1st April 2015
Today Rachael, Nath, Hannah, and Pete worked together to peg out the foundation trenches (200mm wide by 160mm deep). It was great to have a young and very polite Nath helping out. Pete also gave an impromptu banjo performance! Nick was happy for us to cut the fence in half until Sedgemoor replace it and the rusted posts. Thankfully Bullwinkle sorted this and preserved fencing materials for reuse. Residents and local people all stopped to say hi and the positive feedback was lovely thank you.
Tuesday 31st March 2015
We had a long meeting this morning about construction of the raised beds. We met new volunteer 'Bullwinkle' who kindly came forward to help with trade knowledge! Thank you! Our beautiful daffs were dancing in the storm winds - which have also broken the privacy fence again (3rd time) likely beyond repair. Consequently we will fully complete that section of garden first. This afternoon we went to Cannington Construction Skills & Innovation Centre to ask for their professional direction; fingers crossed their students will help!
Friday 13th March 2015
Today we worked to get the rest of the trenches marked out in the rain but we had little rays of sunshine with the daffodils (our first bulbs) coming into flower. Very impressed to have a young man, K. West, from Chilton Trinity School, making good use of his inset day by helping us out with digging and weeding. I hear it was part of a Mother's Day gift to his mum - how sweet! Not long to go now before we can start building the raised beds. If you know any brick-layers, builders or building apprentices that might be able to assist, please get in touch.
Wednesday 25th February 2015
We marked out most of the raised beds and now it is possible to see how the garden will look. Thank you to all our lovely volunteers Hannah, Rachael, Yvey, Paul, Pete and to Nathan from Eden Fencing and Landscaping for spontaneously helping out! Also it seems the 'black bags over wellies and tied up on thighs look' is in and stops traffic: you heard it here first!
Tuesday 3rd February 2015
'Young People Raise £208.69 for
Community Garden in Bridgwater'
Representatives from two local charities, the Somerset Rural Youth Project (SRYP) and Bridgwater & District Civic Society, met at a Community Garden in Bridgwater this week to exchange a cheque for £208.69. SRYP supports young people and their role in communities through the National Citizen Service. Olivia Turner-Smith and a group of 16 - 17 year olds organized and held a fete to raise the money.
Local historian and Civic Society Vice-Chair, H. West says ‘We are extremely grateful to Olivia and her group for undertaking fundraising activities to provide this generous donation. Residents and volunteers are working really hard to enhance an historic green space in our town - once home to Somerset’s late medieval Franciscan Friary (c.1230-1538). The garden demonstrates just what can be achieved with community spirit. Support from young people is an invaluable contribution.’
Cannington College Landscape Design students helped residents to create a design and Yvey Phillips kindly continues to assist on site.
Resident spokesperson Rachael Hill says ‘It’s great to see people coming together because this garden will make a real difference to residents – families and children can finally look forward to a safe and attractive community space’. All work is undertaken by volunteers and grants for materials have been gratefully received from Bridgwater Town Council and Somerset Community Foundation.
Show your support and like the ‘Friarn Community Garden Bridgwater’ Facebook page or contact firstname.lastname@example.org for further information and volunteer opportunities.
Press Release and Images via Bridgwater News - with Thanks
Friday 16th January 2015
Back at the garden in 0 degrees trying to rectify more damage caused by storm winds! We tried to save the fencing with extra bamboo and small fence posts. It's a real shame our budget doesn't stretch to purchase fence panels but we are trying our best to compromise (and innovate!) with what monies we do have. I'm surprised Homes in Sedgemoor won't fence their tenant's garden off from a public space - at least local residents and volunteers are working together to resolve this. Thank you to Hannah, Rachael, Pete and Nick. Roll on Spring :)
Thursday 27th November 2014
Despite the very chilly weather there's still been activity on site! Rachael, Pete and Hannah checked the reinforced bamboo, dug out quite a few weeds (growing in November!) and started marking the raised bed positions by digging small trenches ready for the rockery stone.
Wednesday 31st December 2014 - New Year's Eve!
Wishing all our residents, volunteers and friends a very happy New Year. Thank you for your support and contributions throughout 2014 - there's been much site preparation and hard landscaping undertaken! Now we're looking forward to 2015 and seeing local children plant their flowers and smiles in a beautiful community garden.
Monday 24th November 2014
We did some weeding, reinforced the privacy screen with disused bamboo (from nearby allotment), planted daffodil bulbs donated by the Council (with thanks to Cllr. Brian Smedley) and found this penny in a weed, dated 1930 from when Friarn Avenue was built. It was cold, we had dead feet but at least we weren't the only ones... with it being a medieval graveyard and all that... *chuckles*
Saturday 1st November 2014
Today Hannah viewed another supply of stone for our planting beds. Finding the right material and quantity within our very limited budget has been challenging - but this is the one! The stone is reused with at least one face and is a mixture of Ham Hill, Red Wembdon and Blue Lias. These are local medieval building materials and might even be medieval! A massive thanks to Smiler of Smiler's Sand and Stone for his offer of free haulage to site.
Tuesday 7th October 2014
Yvey and Hannah went to Cannington Quarry to try to source stone for the raised beds. On inspection this rockery stone was found to be too big for our specification but all was not lost because whilst we were there we bumped into a lovely chap called Smiler and he offered free haulage of stone to the garden. Feeling community spirit in the air today!
Wednesday 1st October 2014
For reference laminated signs (like the one below) were put up by Bridgwater Town Council to ensure this week's fair-goers and next week's carnival-watches remain safely outside of the garden whilst site works take place.
Tuesday 23rd September 2014
We cleared more litter and levelled the ground further where possible. Yvey and Paul worked really hard to get the design marked out. Thanks to everyone (especially Rachael for more sausages and coffee!) - it's great to see the design coming to life.
Monday 22nd September 2014
Today our volunteers Yvey, Rachael, and Hannah moved hardcore, metal and glass from the garden into safer large bags for disposal. We dug, moved and levelled soil, marked out the design and redeposited turf. An amazing day's work - well done everyone. Thanks to Pete as well for for removing dangerous fencing wire and creating a levelling tool for us (dragging a scaffolding pole around on ropes is highly effective it seems!).
Saturday 20th September 2014
Over the weekend resident volunteer Rachael did an amazing job of sorting and clearing masses of litter from the site. This work ensures the garden will be much safer for children in future.
Friday 19th September 2014
Hannah cleared/raked the site and then moved all remaining litter to one edge for sorting. She also shovelled a tonne of topsoil off the back of a Jewson van and levelled it!
Thursday 18th September 2014
Rachael, Gordy and Hannah carried on removing the turf, raking the site and sorting the masses of litter (metal, plastic, hardcore, glass, etc.) previously hidden in the grass and soil.
Wednesday 17th September 2014
A very long hard day for volunteers today yet so much achieved. A huge thank you to Rachael, Gordy, Hannah and Pete for working like absolute troopers: cutting, shovelling, heaving and tidying. Back on site tomorrow and Friday - please help if you can!
Tuesday 16th September 2014
We completed the privacy fencing today - thank you to Dee for helping. Tomorrow folks the big landscaping works start... Turf cutter first and it will be noisy! Necessary to create levelled accessibility for everyone. Be prepared and/or help out...
Friday 12th September 2014
A massive thank you to Rachael and family for hours of hard graft clearing and disposing of weeds, brambles, litter and hardcore and, helping with the Reed Screening today until gone 9pm. Your awesome coffees and food were much appreciated! **What a star**