Published date: 19 December 2019

Development of a community garden with allotment beds

A community garden at Houghton-le-Spring Primary Care Centre was overgown and inaccessible after an extended fallow period. Our local team identified the garden as an opportunity to increase the availability of green space in the area for the benefit of a local community group – helping people in a number of ways to live more healthy lives, support and recovery from extended illness, tackling loneliness and supporting educational and physical activity.

Supported by Groundwork, a charity that provides practical help to people who need to improve their communities and their own circumstances, NHSPS employees volunteerd to clear, rebuild and refurbish the garden to create a space that could be useable by the community.

We built allotment beds as well as a compost heap and poly-tunnel. We also funded a ‘tool shed’ of basic tools for groups to use. The garden is used by Sunderland Recovery College, who run gardening sessions from the garden twice a week. The sessions average around five or six students.


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“I love coming here as it gets me out of the house and I can clear my mind of all my worry’s for a couple of hours.”

“It’s good for me to meet like-minded people and it safe and enjoyable.”

“I have no garden at home so I come here to meet people and learn a little.”

Sunderland Recovery College students

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