Cleator Moor residents are being invited to take part in a project to create a vibrant community space in the town.
Copeland Borough Council and Home to Work have joined forces to launch the garden project, with the aim of transforming land on the corner of William Morris Avenue.
The plot is currently under-used and in need of improvement, and the partners are inviting local residents to give their views on how it should be developed and used as a sustainable community space.
This could include some allotment space set aside for the growing of plants and vegetables.
Staff, volunteers and learners from Home to Work’s Skills Project – a charity based on Ennerdale Road – will work with members of the community to manage the development, having been granted it on a peppercorn lease from Copeland Council.
The project has been supported by £20,650 of Cumbria County Council funding; £10,650 from the Copeland Local Committee and £10,000 from Councillor Frank Morgan’s Local Members’ Allowance.
A series of drop-in sessions will take place next week to give the community the opportunity to make their suggestions at the outset.
Karen Jones, Managing Director of Home to Work, said: “We are really keen to engage with local residents, right at the very beginning of this project, so that they can shape what happens with the plot of land.
“We are planning three drop-in sessions and would welcome anyone to drop in and chat about their ideas.
“The community garden will allow members of the community to contribute, benefiting from working as part of a group, raising self-esteem, tackling anxiety and social isolation, but also benefiting from exercise, fresh air and making new friends whilst enhancing an underused plot of land.”
Mike Starkie, Mayor of Copeland, said: “This is an extremely exciting project for Cleator Moor. It is win-win for the town; it gives Home to Work (and their learners) an excellent opportunity to improve and manage a prominent site, and it gives the community a location that they can help develop from the outset and take a great deal of pride in for a long time to come.”
Copeland Councillor Hugh Branney played a key role in the partnership coming together. Councillor Branney said: “Home to Work had been trying to identify a piece of land on which to start this garden project and I was pleased to work with them and Copeland Council to help bring it together on this site.
“Improving this plot can have great benefits for local residents; both socially by people coming together to work on a collective project, and also physically, by getting out into the fresh air, doing some manual work and growing and consuming healthy produce.”
Drop-in sessions on site at William Morris Avenue will take place on May 25 (11am), May 26 (7pm) and May 27 (2pm).