London is a city full of undiscovered green spaces, from little hidden squares to tucked away parks, secret gardens to leafy rooftops. It’s part of the capital’s magical charm that, round the most unexpected of corners, you can find a green oasis in which to pass an hour.
Urban Growth have developed a reputation for creating new green spaces in some of London’s least appreciated areas, but it can be just as important a job to breath new life into already existing gardens, which just need a little TLC to bring them back to life.
In October 2017, we were doing just that, working to bring a fresh look to two community gardens in South London. What made these jobs even more interesting is that both gardens were on the same Tulse Hill housing estate.
Job number one saw the team tackling a small space called the Harmony Garden, first designed by Gwyn Jones & built by Charlie Dimmock for episode two of Charlie’s Garden Army. As would be expected, the basic structure and hard landscaping features remain in good condition, but the planting suffered from a lack of care, and a little colour and new life was required for harmony to be restored.
Four members of our team joined forces with community members for a busy planting day in lovely late summer weather, with children from the area also coming to get involved, and to take an interest in their garden.
By far the most challenging feature of the was the placement of two huge slabs of purple schist from CED Stone, in a dry river bed feature, requiring the combined skills of all four Urban Growth members and some sturdy locals to boot! The stones were placed up safely, and by the end of the day the children had a new Giant’s Causeway across their dry river bed.
As the day came to an end, we left the garden with new friendships being forged between residents who had previously exchanged little more than a polite hello to each other in passing.