There are so many examples of community spirit and expertise in our town, that it is sometimes easy to take for granted the hard work that goes into projects. One such project was recently brought to our attention by Cllr Jim Lynch, who sent us off with a camera to see for ourselves and commented:
In the dead of winter I spotted a group of women digging and planting on this piece of neglected ground. Now look at it! Turned out it’s the Women’s Institute just getting on with it. Well done and here’s to more of that!
We think you’ll agree that they have created something truly wonderful and we wanted to find out more.
So we contacted Sue Denmark at Ms B-Avon W.I. to find out how the project came about:
I’ve been walking past Victory Fields since my school days 50 years ago, and was so was sad to see the small strip of land on the entrance to the canal slip road looking neglected and overgrown. I spoke to several people and found out the land may be owned by the business on the canal, Heaven Scents, who were happy for me to tidy the area up. Having started Ms B-Avon W.I. three years ago, I knew just the women to ask!
A group of three W.I. Members; myself, Lee Mourant and Mandy got together on a cold October morning to weed and dig the plot for winter and planted some spring bulbs, donated by Heaven Scents and ByTheWay. We were encouraged by several members of the community who bought us bin bags and coffee along with lots of encouragement! Several months of cold, wet and snowy weather meant a long wait to see the first snowdrops emerge, followed by crocus, hyacinths and other bulbs. The border is now looking bright and cheerful, and has received lots of comments and congratulations. One passer-by commented “You’ve made my walk into town – I smile every time I see that splash of colour!”
MsB-Avon W.I. plan to maintain the strip, with mainly scented plants to attract wildlife, but welcome help from anyone who would like to join in, whether a W.I. member or not. We plan to have regular gardening sessions, times of which we will post on our Facebook page and Twitter @MsBAvonWI or get in touch with us via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are inspired by this project and have an idea of your own, we’d love to hear about it, and if it might help our bid to win this year’s SW in Bloom, then why not get in touch with Cllr Emma Franklin who is heading up plans to make Bradford on Avon even more beautiful in time for the judges visit!