Saturday, 3 December 2011

Who wouldn't smile at seeing a cow grazing in the east end of London? In praise of Eric Street Community Garden

This makes me smile, when I walk past on the way from Mile End station in Tower Hamlets... 

..but on a more serious note, the spaces around estates are often neglected, unloved, and pretty inaccessible. But the playful design of the "recipe tree" and the grazing cow seem to have made this feel more like a space people want to spend time in, play in, talk to each other in.

In Sowing the seeds: reconnecting London's children with nature [PDF], Tim Gill writes about the project:

  • Aims to give children and families a doorstep play space with a taste of nature
  • Landscaped green space with modest use of equipment and growing beds
  • Created in 2010 at a capital cost of £20k
  • Project-managed by East End Homes, funded through corporate sponsorship
  • Developed in two months through a collaboration with residents
  • Play Association Tower Hamlets runs supervised play sessions to build up familiarity and use.
So I'd say the project is a worthy runner up in the Gardening against the Odds competition and it's hard not to be impressed by Kerrygold's decision to provide a little bit of funding to create a little bit of pleasure in east London.