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

Posts Tagged ‘gardening’

New Job, new partnership: fresh opportunities at Abbey Gardens

We have two brand new opportunities this season:

Garden Leader – Part Time Job Opportunity
Download information http://www.abbeygardens.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/Garden-Leader-Job-Opportunity-FOAG_rev18.03.pdf or scroll down for details.

Partnership Search
Download information http://www.abbeygardens.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/Partnership-Search-FOAG_rev18.03.pdf or scroll down for details.

Garden Leader – Part Time Job Opportunity

Abbey Gardens is an open-access harvest garden in the East London borough of Newham where anyone is welcome to participate in the communal growing of flowers, fruit and vegetables. Unlike the traditional allotment system, at present no one has their own patch and users garden together at regular sessions led by an experienced gardener. The produce is shared among volunteers and is also available to the local community in return for donations from one of the garden’s two Honesty Stalls. Abbey Gardens has been operating for over 10 years, thanks to the tireless local support, effort and engagement that has enabled the initiative to endure beyond its planned 2 year lifespan. The Garden continues to bring the local community together through free gardening sessions, team building days for local organisations, health and wellbeing events, food & craft markets and an annual Harvest Festival.

The Abbey Gardens site is one of only two Scheduled Ancient Monuments in Newham and contains the remains of a 12th-century Cistercian abbey where monks once ran a kitchen garden. In 2006 a group of local residents formed Friends of Abbey Gardens, initially with the aim of rescuing the derelict site from vandalism and neglect. With the commissioning of an arts project entitled “What Will The Harvest Be?”, the plan was made to turn Abbey Gardens into an open-access park and harvest garden. The soil was found to be contaminated, but with time and effort this setback was overcome and a beautiful artist-designed harvest garden was created in 30 long raised beds.

The Trustees of the Garden, the founding artists and the volunteer community group are reaching out to find a new partner or organisation to move the garden to the next stage of evolution. In these roles, you have the opportunity to be involved in the evolution and improvement of a rare green space in urban London, which has incredible potential for creative and exciting gardening and social initiatives.

We are inviting expressions of interest in the position of:

Garden Activity Leader – Part time position – 12 noon – 4pm Saturdays April 2019 – December 2019

Key Responsibilities

  • Planning, resourcing and leading the weekly garden club sessions and implementing the garden planting scheme for each growing season.
  • Providing both individual and group hands-on tuition and encouragement to members of the public who want to use the garden.
  • Encouraging and recruiting new members of the group and maintaining a diverse volunteer interest
  • Ensuring the use of safe working practices at the site, both for volunteer gardeners, and the safety of the visiting public.
  • Conducting regular routine maintenance of the garden. .
  • Ensure that site building/s and tools are well-maintained and secured as necessary.
  • Recording garden activity (such as user numbers) accurately and distributing / collating supplied project evaluation materials as required.
  • Undertaking any other related responsibilities commensurate with the evolving objectives of the post and the evolution of the garden, as may reasonably be requested by the Managing Committee and Board of Trustees.

Person Specification

  • Enthusiastic and self-motivated person with a passion for getting people (of all ages and abilities) gardening and enjoying plants.
  • Strong technical knowledge of horticulture, natural and organic growing practices, and have an innovative and creative gardening approach.
  • Confident and clear communicator, able to share ideas and find solutions as the garden evolves activities and partnerships.
  • Commercially minded for the success of the garden, seeking new opportunities to make the garden successful and relevant to the local community and partnerships.
  • Local advocate for the project and comfortable working independently and in a collaborative team.

Please send your expressions of interest to: abbeygardens.e15@gmail.com by March 23rd 2019. Applications will be reviewed and selection process will take place w/c March 25th 2019.

www.abbeygardens.org

 

Partnership Search

Abbey Gardens is an open-access harvest garden in the East London borough of Newham where anyone is welcome to participate in the communal growing of flowers, fruit and vegetables. Unlike the traditional allotment system, at present no one has their own patch and users garden together at regular sessions led by an experienced gardener. The produce is shared among volunteers and is also available to the local community in return for donations from one of the garden’s two Honesty Stalls. Abbey Gardens has been operating for over 10 years, thanks to the tireless local support, effort and engagement that has enabled the initiative to endure beyond its planned 2 year lifespan. The Garden continues to bring the local community together through free gardening sessions, team building days for local organisations, health and wellbeing events, food & craft markets and an annual Harvest Festival.

The Abbey Gardens site is one of only two Scheduled Ancient Monuments in Newham and contains the remains of a 12th-century Cistercian abbey where monks once ran a kitchen garden. In 2006 a group of local residents formed Friends of Abbey Gardens, initially with the aim of rescuing the derelict site from vandalism and neglect. With the commissioning of an arts project entitled “What Will The Harvest Be?”, the plan was made to turn Abbey Gardens into an open-access park and harvest garden. The soil was found to be contaminated, but with time and effort this setback was overcome and a beautiful artist-designed harvest garden was created in 30 long raised beds.

The Trustees of the Garden, the founding artists and the volunteer community group are reaching out to find a new partner or organisation to move the garden to the next stage of evolution. In these roles, you have the opportunity to be involved in the evolution and improvement of a rare green space in urban London, which has incredible potential for creative and exciting gardening and social initiatives.

Abbey Gardens is a rare green space in Stratford that provides an opportunity for a local organisation to establish a new business opportunity or to expand on an existing venture. The 1 acre site is currently an open public space, which has historical significance and strong local and community support. Currently run as a not for profit community garden, the trustees and local volunteers are inviting a new partner to write the next chapter of the gardens’ history. We are open to discussions with potential partners that could contribute to the overall aims of the garden:

  • To build a strong local and community initiative to support health, wellbeing, social connections and positive mental health.
  • To engage a wide range of community groups in connecting with nature through planting, growing, harvesting, and maintaining a healthy green space in which to connect with nature.
  • To champion Abbey Gardens as an innovative and engaged community group, enthusiastic about building a positive and healthy future for the local area.
  • To build a sustainable business model to ensure the long term viability of the space, building on opportunities to sustain revenue and success of the garden space/land.

We’d love to hear from you and discuss your proposition for the garden space, please get in contact with your:

  • Proposal vision & overview
  • Intended timelines & resource requirements
  • Budget and financial plan
  • Key objectives

Please send your expressions of interest to:abbeygardens.e15@gmail.com by March 23rd 2019. Applications will be reviewed and selection process will take place w/c March 25th 2019.

www.abbeygardens.org

Start the season 2019

Got the gardening bug after the recent burst of Spring? Come and help get the garden ready for the season at our FREE volunteer-run community gardening sessions on Saturdays 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30 March, 1pm-3pm. Come along for the whole session or drop in when you can. No experience necessary; tools and gloves provided. Children are welcome if gardening with a parent or carer.

Future Vision of the Garden: a workshop on Saturday 2 February

Abbey Gardens has now been running successfully for 11 years. This is incredible, especially on limited resources. The garden has been managed primarily by volunteers since its conception and like any organisation, it needs to have a new life to be fit for the future.

We are hosting a visioning workshop session on:
Saturday 2 February 2019
10:30 am – 12:30 pm
Abbey Gardens Cabin – Bakers Row – E15 

This is open to all members, but we would very much like to have input from actively involved gardeners and behind the scenes volunteers.

Book your place by emailing Torange at:
Mail@abbeygardens.org

New arrivals and old friends

Gardens: you turn round and suddenly, flowers are out, fruits are forming and there are signs of early Summer.

We’ve seen our first ripe strawberries this week, spinach has been cleared before it goes to seed and in its place are new seedlings, grown off-site by our busy band of volunteers. More new varieties of food crop are making their way into the garden, this week mooli and a spinach-like plant that grows red and turns green when cooked.

And there are old friends too: poppies and aquilegia. Aquilegia was in our first year’s planting plan by artists Somewhere, who designed the garden. Each year, it self-seeds and these delicate little flowers cheer us all over again.

If you’d like to join us for some community gardening, our free, drop-in gardening sessions are on Tuesdays 1pm-3pm, Thursdays 4pm-7pm and Saturdays 11am-4pm. Unlike an allotment, we garden and harvest together. Stay for the whole session, pop in for an hour, ask us about the garden or just come and enjoy the peaceful urban green space. 

Where there’s muck there’s plants

AG-compost-work-Aug-15

Compost. It’s not the most glamorous stuff. But it’s a wonderful thing that cleared plants can break down into goodness to go back onto the raised beds. With our three compost bins in constant use, we have to make space for the next cleared plants to go in. So garden club leader Hamish and our volunteers have been transferring compost that’s almost ready into one bin and then chopping up what’s left and our clearings for the day to put into an empty bin in layers, watered and prepared to break down quickly.

Volunteering, we learn things along the way. From helping out, we’ve had an active and sociable day, harvested veg to share and those of us with compost bins at home are all clued-up for our own composting!

Fancy a go? Come along to one of our garden club sessions and say hello! They’re on Tuesdays 1pm-3pm, Thursdays 4pm-7pm and Saturdays 10am-4pm. Complete beginners are welcome as well as experienced gardeners, we have gardeners of all ages (children must be accompanied by an adult) and you can give as much or as little time as you can spare.

 

 

Open Garden Squares: Saturday 13 June

OGS_lo

Many of our volunteers spend more time in the garden than they’d planned – just because Abbey Gardens is a lovely place to be. So come and enjoy the garden with us on Saturday 13 June, the first day of Open Garden Squares Weekend. If you visit between 10am and 4pm you can see our Saturday garden club session in action, chat with our volunteers and get expert insight and information from garden club leader Hamish Liddle.

Please note that there will be resurfacing works along Bakers Row. The nearest parking is on Bridge Road with access to the garden via footpath. Otherwise, we’re right next to Abbey Road DLR station and walking distance from bus stops along West Ham Lane and Manor Road. The Transport for London website gives weekend travel information.

Pumpkin Fest! A free event for all ages Saturday 27th September 1pm-4pm

FOAG_Harvest_A5_600px_web

Abbey Gardens Pumpkin fest – a free event for all ages

Saturday 27 September 2014, 1pm-4pm
Abbey Gardens, Bakers Row, London E15 3NF

Celebrating all things pumpkin, the most expressive of the vegetables…

Come along for the free activities and enjoy the garden

  • Enter the pumpkin carving competition – bring your pumpkins already carved or decorated to the event
  • Bring your pumpkins, squashes or giant marrows to help us create a Pumpkin Exhibition – you may win a prize
  • Children’s pumpkin craft workshop
  • Delicious food created by Vegan Peasant
  • Pumpkin face painting
  • Get your photo taken as a Pumpkin Head
  • Enjoy music from Regent Community Brass Band
  • Learn the history of pumpkin carving
  • Buy fresh produce, as well as homemade pickles, jams and chutneys on our honesty stall
  • Garden tours from our garden leader, Hamish Liddle
  • Test your knowledge in our Vegetable Quiz
  • And our ever-popular tea and cake stall!

All activities are free. Drinks, food and honesty stall produce for donations to the garden.

Hamish with pumpkin_lo

gherkins

Big Dig dug!

big-dig-blog

Digging, turning over, composting… We’ve joined in with the Big Dig, raised beds are dug over with trenches ready for potatoes and two patches are planted-up with broad beans and peas. We’ve shared the last pickings of our black kale with regular gardeners and new friends – and there’s been fantastic fruit cake by Dasha for the tea break.

Next up: Ready, Steady, Grow!, our event on 26 April from 1pm-3pm. Bring a picnic and enjoy some Spring gardening activities:

  • Help us plant pumpkins – and plant your own to take away and bring to our Pumpkin Day in September
  • Perfect Pumpkins – all about how to sow, grow and look after your seedlings
  • Bring your favourite pumpkin recipe for sharing
  • Make a stylish scarecrow
  • The grand opening of our new composting toilet, designed and built by our volunteers
  • And our ever-popular tea and cake stall

All activities are free. Drinks, food and honesty stall produce for donations to the garden.

 

 

The Big Dig: Saturday 22 March 10am-4pm

big-dig-blogpic2

This Saturday we’re taking part in The Big Dig alongside our regular garden club session from 10am to 4pm. If you fancy a go at community gardening but aren’t sure what it involves, come along, say hello and get growing. You don’t need to be an experienced gardener: just bring your enthusiasm.

You could be planting potatoes or broad beans, digging (of course), spreading compost, working on the fig tree, weeding around the fruit trees, working on the wildflower strip or doing some propagation. All in the beautiful setting of Abbey Gardens, started by the local community and now in its sixth growing season.

There will be garden tours by garden club leader Hamish and inductions for anyone new who’d like to join in with the day’s activities.

See you on Saturday!

 

Raking, sorting, building, creating

AG-blog-march-1-14

After a wet Winter there’s some drying-out for the garden to do before we start planting for the season. But there’s plenty to get on with… Hamish has been sorting the seeds and listing varieties for 2014, we’ve raked the wildflower strip so that we can see where the gaps are to fill in, clearing has revealed new growth, green manure sown last year has been dug in to enrich the soil and the composting toilet is in construction.

Our newly-expanded events team is busy too, hatching ideas for this year’s themes. Watch this space for details.