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Cllrs Mason and Costigan with school pupils visit Western Road Urban Garden

Space to grow

Residents in Southall now have a brilliant new community growing space to enjoy.

Councillors Peter Mason, leader of the council, and Deirdre Costigan, deputy leader and cabinet member for climate action, joined year 8 pupils from Greenford High School, in Lady Margaret Road, Southall, on a visit to the Western Road Urban Garden.

This new local food growing facility has been created by the charity Southall Community Alliance (SCA) with the help of the council and other local groups and organisations.

Councillor Mason said: “Growing spaces are brilliant for communities. They bring neighbours together, and everyone, including young people, gets to learn about nature and growing food. Supporting these projects is part of our commitment to give residents greater access to green spaces and clean air.”

Councillor Costigan said: “We made an ambitious promise to create 10 new community growing spaces in the borough by 2026, With this new community garden at Western Road in Southall we’ve now delivered 5 new growing spaces, well on our way to our goal. These new community gardens are a fantastic way of growing food locally, reducing our carbon footprint and providing a home for wildlife.”

The charity, joined by local groups and residents, cleaned up what had been an underused 2-acre site that now has a small allotment space, raised beds, a polytunnel and a community orchard.

It provides a space where residents can get together, enjoy the fresh air and exercise and grow a crop of fresh vegetables and herbs. The team is also working with local schools to teach young people about nature and growing food.

Janpal Basran, director of the charity, said: “Our vision is to create an urban garden for use by local residents that can provide leisure, food growing and help improve awareness of biodiversity issues.”

The urban garden is just one of a number of new community growing spaces created in the borough as part of the council’s wider aims to achieve its goal to be carbon neutral by 2030.

The SCA partners in the project include Southall Transition, Ealing Allotments Partnership, Feeding Ealing and LAGER Can.

The project also received funding from the GLA and Heathrow Community Trust to carry out improvement works.

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