Coming to the community's rescue
30th October 2017
A Mid Sussex business has proved to be a 'Godsend' to a community project struggling to complete a greenhouse to provide therapeutic work experience for those feeling isolated.

The Your Sutton Community Project published an appeal on social media which was picked up by eagle-eyed staff at Tates of Sussex, the family-run firm which operates three garden centres in the county.

As the project's Kevin Plicio explains, the aim was to transform a derelict plant tunnel into an indoor garden, providing a peaceful seating area while offering hands-on experience: "We are a tiny, unfunded operation and all that we grow is used to plant up 16 community garden plots that we have planned to showcase community achievement ."

Some 30 local volunteers, with differing backgrounds and abilities, support the work. "They help us to provide an inclusive horticulture community project and therapeutic activities to those who might otherwise for whatever circumstances, find themselves isolated or struggling to integrate with the wider community", adds Kevin.

"We were delighted to answer the cri de coeur and make available the necessary glass panes for this most worthwhile and innovative project to create work-based learning opportunities in a community plant nursery ", explains Sarah Mead from South Downs Nurseries in Hassocks.

The work so far earned a Joint-First in the recent Sutton In Bloom best Community Garden competition, recognition that, after seven years, the work of the project it is starting to be actively recognised and supported by local companies and organisations.

"The donation of glass panes by South Downs Nurseries has been a Godsend and allowed us to transform our community space", says Kevin. "Thank you so much for helping to make a very big difference at our project."