Fund-raising Campaign Aims to Replace Ravenscourt Park Glasshouses

With modern all-weather green hub for whole community

Hammersmith Community Gardens Association has launched a fund-raising campaign to replace the ageing glasshouses in Ravenscourt Park with a modern green community hub for local residents.

The glasshouses were built in the 1960s, but now need an overhaul for modern use.

On the campaign's Spacehive page, the Hammersmith Community Gardens Association, or HCGA says: " HCGA have been gardening on the site since 2004. The existing glasshouse structures have been refurbished twice but are at the end of their life.

" Existing facilities consist of a completely inadequate one electric socket and one cold water tap. There is no heating and the resource is unusable during the winter (three months of the year).

"The project is in response to many requests from local users who are also local residents. We offer a range of activities from school visits, volunteer gardening sessions for people including refugees and those with health and learning difficulties. Pop up Yoga is held twice weekly.

"The glasshouses are the headquarters for our wider organisation. The new glasshouse will be configured for maximum use. A large central space that can be used for meetings, concerts & workshops leading out on to the walled garden that we have exclusive use of.

"To facilitate this vision we have negotiated a 25 year lease on the site, and secured full planning permission."

HCGA’s community work in the glasshouses was hailed as 'outstanding' at the 2018 Royal Horticultural Society's It's Your Neighbourhood Awards.

The HCGA says: " Our charity is very people focused -we work with 60+ volunteers each week many of whom are socially or economically disadvantaged.

"Our Grow Well programme at the glasshouses runs activities for people with long term health issues or who have caring responsibilities. Our Get Out There / Men in Sheds project' all socially isolated older men' undertake much of the ,maintenance at the site. We receive referrals from St Mungos. Alzheimer’s Soc and local GPs. We receive many requests from other organisations and host regular professional tours to share our learning.

"We work with 16 schools on a weekly basis, grow plants for use by the schools at the project. We also host class visits at the glasshouses.

"We work across four local boroughs and the glasshouses are our HQ where we deliver a range of workshops for both the general public and CPD sessions for teacher and healthcare professionals. Other groups also use the space, a yoga group and the NHS run an eco therapy session for patients."

The fund-raising campaign aims to hit a goal of £114,194 by Monday 12 August and says people's pledges will only be charged if the total is reached.

This week, it is almost halfway there, having raised over £51,000 - 45% of its total.

"We really appreciate everyone’s help with this,” said Katie Shaw, of the HCGA.

"We have a very, very long way to go and at this point we need lots of local pledges - it doesn't matter how much people pledge."

Find out more and add your pledge at Spacehive.

July 5, 2019