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Posted on 11 April 2022

Green-fingered Hyde colleagues and customers from our Kennington Park Estate put on their gardening gloves as part of the Kennington Green Escape project.

The project is a result of Hyde Foundation, working with Kennington Park Estate Community Garden Group and other local partners, being awarded nearly £50,000 from the Grow Back Greener Fund to improve green spaces across our Kennington Park Estate. The project works with the community to improve unused and derelict spaces across the estate.

And, what better way to help the project than to organise a ‘volunteering day’ for colleagues to help with the next stage of the community garden. The volunteering day took place on 7 April and colleagues and customers worked hard putting soil into raised beds made with recycled wooden pallets and then planting herbs that customers can use in their cooking. They also started construction of a pergola for the garden kitchen area, and planted trees for the garden orchard.

The day was also made possible thanks to social value assistance from our contractors Groundscapes, who provided plants and compost.

The day was topped off by Steve Austin, Hyde’s Head of Maintenance, arranging for Mears to put up a mosaic sign made by residents and volunteers from earlier volunteer days.

Matt Hopkins, Property Manager for Hyde, who is leading the project said: “Kennington Green Escape is a one year project that will transform four unused or inaccessible sites across the estate. These grey spaces will be recreated into green, functional, biodiverse places where our customers have access to and will take ownership of.

“We have 730 homes on the estate and this funding is community partnership at its best. Not only will it be great for customer involvement, but it will also bring environmental improvements to Kennington and will also mean health improvements to our customers. It was great working with so many colleagues and customers as part of the volunteering day – everybody’s hard work will help transform the way that our Kennington Estate looks.”

The project builds on Hyde’s existing commitment to provide 2,400m2 of accessible green space, providing opportunities for recreational, community events and outdoor learning.

The 2021 Grow Back Greener Fund is co-funded by the Mayor of London and Thames Water, and has awarded £1.4m to 45 community projects that will create and enhance green spaces and increase climate resilience. The fund prioritises projects in areas of deprivation, high climate risk and poor access to green space.