Sunday, 22 September 2013

Corporate - Community Gardening: Anatomy of a Failure

Hi Garden Friends,

Many people in NW2 fondly remember the Adrian Hall Garden Centre on Iverson Road before it closed in 2011. It's credo was ' inspire and enable the creation of any London garden project through the supply of garden related goods.'

What with the new Thameslink station next door and all the high-density development around it in West Hampstead, the garden centre lost it lease and the land was sold off, bought off, sold off and bought off again apparently for more high-density housing. Demolition is now underway.

Ever on the lookout for salvageable and free gardening materials, Garden Friends NW2 spotted a wealth of items on the site being dug up and put into a huge skip, including paving bricks and stones, trellises, topsoil in raised planters, and even a pergola that could be used to frame a greenhouse.

So we contacted the estate agent who had sold the property and made an enquiry.

And another enquiry. And were told that our enquiries had been passed on to the owners/developers and they would reply to us directly. We waited. No reply. So we made a follow-up enquiry. Still no response came.

So we contacted the demolition company with our enquiry.

And still no reply. We tried to point out to the sales agent, unknown developer, and demolition company that the former garden centre was a vibrant green spot in the community that is sorely missed by many. And that Garden Friends NW2 in its community gardening way is trying to green-up and clean-up the area, so wouldn't it be natural and nice for some corporate collaboration, given the history and now future of the property. 

And wouldn't they, as part of our community like to have less of this on Iverson Road:

And less of this on Fordwych Road:

And less of this on St Cuthberts Road:

And more of this on all the roads on our soon-to-be proposed Green Mile Walk:

It's been about a month of trying, and sad to say, we have to report our attempts have met with complete failure. The pergola's gone. The raised beds with topsoil are gone. The trellises are gone. Most of the paving bricks are gone. So after licking our wounds, it's back to guerrilla gardening for us.

Keep calm and carry on guerrilla gardening.

Friday, 13 September 2013

Welcoming Zipcar to our Garden Friends NW2 Neighbourhood

Hi everyone,

Part of our Green-up & Clean-up in the Fordwych Road neighbourhood of course involves transportation, and promoting as much eco-friendly ways of getting from here to there and back as possible.

So you might find it interesting and welcoming to know that Zipcar, the premier 'car sharing' scheme now has a designated car club parking spot complete with a car that 'lives' there right on the corner of Fordwych Road and Garlinge Road.

And to complete the tie-in with Garden Friends NW2, the Zipcar folks are even into gardening! Here's a link to their website where you can find out all kinds of interesting things about their gardening project as well as lots of good start-up information for fruit and veg gardens in London.

Welcome to the neighbourhood, Zipcar, and keep calm and carry on gardening!

King's Cross Harvest Festival Feast

Hi everyone,

Our good friends at Alara in King's Cross are having a Harvest Festival Feast on Friday September 20th 6-8pm. It's free and everyone is welcome, so think about attending if you are interested in gardening, sustainability and community. With any luck, Garden Friends NW2 can aspire to eventually doing even a tiny replica of this great idea here on Fordwych Road in the future.

Keep calm and carry on gardening (and eventually harvesting)!