It seems like ages since we got together on that wonderfully sunny Sunday in October at our Information Sharing Day. Since then there has been a hive of activity across the VotE team and we are working hard to make our dream of a community food garden a reality.
Inevitably there are lots of steps that need to be taken before we can put spade to ground, so here’s an update on what’s been going on behind the scenes:
We have been doing lots of research into funding, and are now working towards submitting a substantial funding bid in 2014, as well as several smaller ones. As you can imagine, there is a huge amount of detailed information we need to provide to funders, so we are beavering away on all the elements that need to be in place before we can push the button.
A big thank you to Russell, our soil-tester in shining armour who came along to the Information Sharing Day and offered his much-needed professional support. If you have lived in the area for some time you may be aware that the site has a varied history and was once a quarry, so the lab results of the soil tests will help shape the final garden design.
We are also indebted to the wonderful Shubhu, a lawyer we met through our Information Sharing Day, who is guiding us on the development of a lease with landowners Bradford Metropolitan District Council.
Thanks to some great feedback from local residents on our initial plans, we can now move forward to create a more detailed Master Plan that will specify all the features and materials we would like to include.
In early December we invited respondents that had expressed an interest in how the garden would be composed to attend a Garden Design sub-group meeting. A number of brave souls gave up their Sunday morning to discuss the merits of cloches and bark chippings, supported by muffins and much needed coffee. The sub-group all have homework to do over Christmas, and will get back together in early January to finalise the design brief. Shortly after we hope to have more funding in place to enable us to work again with BCEP to translate these ideas into detailed professional plans.
The Garden Design sub-group is the first VotE sub-group to have met, but as the project develops rest assured that if you have expressed an interest in a particular aspect we will be inviting you to take part – from fundraising, garden design, community links, communications, and events there is plenty to do – so we look forward to seeing you again in the New Year.