Coventry Tree Warden Network have received more support from the Foundation with a £2,000 grant to educate local people and recruit new members as they attempt to turn the neglected piece of history into a thriving community space.
Nestled against the A444, we met the Coventry Tree Wardens working their magic on land that has been cut back and forgotten about for decades.
Once a thriving community orchard, Kingsfield Gardens hosted plentiful allotments, buildings and livestock. It was first dated on maps in the 1860s and was sealed off from the public when a dual carriageway into the city was built.
Terry, Coventry Tree Warden, said:
“When we first opened this gate it was just solid ivy trees. To get in we had to work our way across the embankment which was built when they put the road in about 20 years ago.
“It was founded in the 1850s so people in the city could come out, set up their gardens and grow their own fruit and vegetables. It continued as that until the early part of the 20th Century. Bits have been taken off it and 20 years ago it closed and was forgotten about.”
The Foundation’s grant has funded the purchase of presentation equipment enabling the group to showcase their work and hire a part-time student who will boost their social media presence.
Cathy, Coventry Tree Warden, said:
“We can’t do loads of projects because we can’t maintain them, we’ve enough trouble trying to maintain this! But what we’re trying to do is get other people into it. One of the reasons why this area has done so well is that a lot of us live here.
“It’s desperately important to get new people involved in the project. When we meet new groups, they expect you to do a presentation, now we’ve got the kit!
“The latest grant will provide us with somebody to help us on social media; we’re not into it and we need to be!
“Right now, the timing is absolutely perfect with all the climate change stuff and the importance of the trees, we’ve got young people interested – we need to get the power behind us to really make a difference!”
If you’d like to apply for funding please view our Available Grants here.