Community projects taking positive actions for nature

Introducing the groups receiving Grow Wild community funding in 2022.

In the UK we’re lucky to have a wonderful variety of native plant and fungi species. Not only do they bring colour and interest to our lives, they provide vital food sources and shelter for insects, birds and other wildlife. Despite being rewarding to grow many of our UK native species are unfortunately in decline, particularly in more urban areas. 

Every year, Grow Wild supports communities with ambitions to transform an urban space, with ideas to help connect local people with nature through planting and taking positive actions for nature.  

About the applications 

This year 58 groups applied from across the country. The quality of applications was high, with a wide variety of groups applying such as youth groups, residents' groups, friends of parks groups, schools and faith groups. Some groups already had a green space to work with, but others wanted to start from scratch and had spaces with no prior planting. It was a difficult decision for the panel to whittle the groups down from 58 to just five, and because of this seven projects have been successful in gaining 2022 funding.  

Explore the groups below to see the projects this year's funding is supporting.

'Keep out bees at work' sign with beehives in the background of a woodland area Beehives at Incredible Edible Garforth, Image credit Incredible Edible Leeds

 

Incredible Edible Leeds 

The group have become custodians of an overgrown area of land at the back of some houses in Garforth. The group plans to enhance biodiversity and opportunities for nature to thrive, whilst improving access for people to learn from and enjoy the space.  Incredible Edible Leeds won't just be contending with prickly plants. The group will also be collaborating with other local groups, including a hedgehog rescue charity who want to release hedgehogs into the site. 

A woman standing on a large pile of rubble The Hanging Gardens project prior to starting.

 

The Wilderness Trust – The Hanging Gardens 

This group have a thriving community hub in the centre of Llandidloes, in converted chapel buildings. They plan to transform two key areas of their outdoor space, which currently lacks any greenery by creating a potted native woodland. 

An abstract art mural made up of black shapes on white tiles, on a wall above plants in a bed on the ground. Community produced mural in Morecambe Micro-Gardens, credit Graft Lancaster.

 

Good Things Collective 

This group has adopted a small space beside terraced houses in Morecambe and are developing it as a community garden 'Morecambe Micro-Gardens' with local residents, many of whom live in flats without space for growing. The group will run workshops with partner organisations to help people learn more about growing and UK native plants, accompanied by outdoor cooking sessions and a plant inspired mural. 

A man stood in a yellow hi-vis jacket next to a woman wearing a red top, sat in a wheelchair, in a park in front of a building site Members of the project team from the Friends of Kelly Avenue Park

 

The Friends of Kelly Avenue Park 

Their space at present lacks plant diversity containing neglected and worn-out planters. They want to build new planters/raised beds in a 'Growing area' and encourage children from local schools and nurseries to take ownership and learn how to care for plants. They also intend to plant saplings around the borders, transforming it from an unwelcoming urban landscape to a 'greener' friendlier environment. 

4 children and an adult with a spade stood on grass, building a wooden structure from sticks Engaging young, local residents on The Hollybush Estate.

 

HETRA - Hollybush Estate Tenants and Residents Association  

This resident's group at a development of flats in Cardiff have begun transforming areas of their estate through planting and engaging neighbours. Now the group plan to create a children's garden, as a route to involve more families and build connections to nature amongst young people. They will run a gardening group for children through the summer and create a structure using willow for all to enjoy. 

A white wooden bench in front of a bug hotel in a garden New seating and a bug hotel created using reclaimed wood and other scrap materials.

 

UareUK – Broom Grove Community Garden 

This Refugee charity have been given the use of an old allotment site by Wrexham Council. The group plans to engage the wider community including refugees to transform the space through planting, creation of bug hotels, a pond and wildflower seeding etc. They hope the space will bring people together, as well as enhance biodiversity in an area where many gardens are being paved over for driveways. 

Planters in the garden of Conquer CIC in Bootle, beside a fire pit and recycled tire seating Conquer CIC, September 2022

 

Conquer Life CIC – Vibe Project 

The group plan to transform the barren yard space at the back of their repurposed pub building, which currently lacks greenery. A gardening club for young people will be run through August, to enable their young members to take a leading role in the transformation. The site is near to a local canal, so the group are keen to create a space that supports and connects local wildlife.   

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