Welcome to Abbey Gardens, a community garden in West Ham
surrounding part of the ruins of a
12th century abbey.

There are free garden club sessions and new gardeners are always welcome. The garden is open to visitors from dawn till dusk.


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In the garden:

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Gardening sessions take place on
Tuesdays 1pm-3pm
Thursdays 4pm-7pm
Saturdays 10am-4pm

Abbey Gardens crowned most inspiring community food garden in Capital Growth’s Grow for Gold competition

Abbey Gardens has been crowned most inspiring community food garden beating competition from a 1900+ strong network of similar spaces across London.

The Grow for Gold competition, run by the Capital Growth network during 2012, has announced the winners of five different categories celebrating the breadth of community food growing spaces across London.  Grow for Gold judge, Fred Foot, from Bulldog Tools, said, ‘We were blown away by the quality of the entries. It was really hard to choose the winners, when all the spaces and the groups behind them have made such an impact. It was like splitting hairs to choose, but that’s what we had to do.’

Paola Guzman, from Capital Growth, said of the competition, ’Over the last four years of running Capital Growth, there have been so many great stories behind the thousands of new community food gardens that have been set up. This competition was our way of congratulating those groups who have made a real difference, be it with the people they have brought together, the difference they’ve made to their local environment, or the amount they have grown.’

After visiting Abbey Gardens, the judges commented: “It’s a beautiful space full of great people, with interesting stories. We all felt inspired when we left.” They added that “the creative input was so important, as was having a beautiful design”. (The garden was designed by artists Nina Pope and Karen Guthrie of Somewhere, as the project What Will The Harvest Be?) They also liked the “events that reach out to the wider community, the open access, and that everyone can get involved”. The honesty stall (by founding FOAG member Andreas Lang of Public Works) and use of social media were also praised.

The Grow for Gold winners are:

  • Bee Friendly garden – Fairlie Grow, Tower Hamlets
  • Learning food garden – Chisenhale Primary School, Tower Hamlets
  • People’s food garden – Crystal Palace Transition Town, Lambeth
  • Inspiring food garden – Abbey Gardens, Newham
  • Enterprise food garden – Lambeth Poly, Lambeth
Capital Growth, which  runs the network of community food gardens, is offering grants to new spaces.
Pictures © Nina Pope, Jen Currier and Lydia Thornley