The scheme to restore Hastings’ Alexandra Park Greenhouse could possibly be one step closer to completion after it was announced that it has been shortlisted for a grant worth thousands of pounds, to repair the cast iron frame, from supermarket giant Tesco.
The restoration of the huge 1930s structure is estimated to cost around £140,000. Now, the project called Framework for a Growing Future has been shortlisted for a grant between £8,000 and £12,000 from the initiative run by Tesco and the charity Groundwork - funds which have been raised from the 5p plastic bag charge - known as Tesco #BagsofHelp grant.
Linda Pearson, chairman of the Alexandra Park Greenhouse Group which is behind the project, says it will be rewarding for the committee and the “wonderful volunteers who have worked steadfastly over the last three years” to receive some significant financial help from Tesco.
“Being shortlisted will ensure that the project moves on to the next stage,” she said.
“That is, the total repair and reuse of this wonderful facility which is loved and has been much missed by the community. Please vote for us!”
To be in with a chance of winning the grant Linda is urging shoppers to vote for the project at Tesco store’s in Church Wood Drive, St Leonards, or Ravenside, Bexhill, between September 26-October 9.
The frame restoration is part of a £140,000 fund-raising campaign by the Alexandra Park Greenhouse Group to bring the structure back into use.
Linda added: “If funds are secured the greenhouse’s frame will be restored by blacksmiths Tobias Cobrin and Ben Crosthwaite of the Over Wrought Forge at the Britannia Enterprise Centre, Waterworks Road, Hastings.
“Work will include making the ventilation system work again, repairing the decorative iron brackets and replacing fatigued metal.
“The blacksmiths’ artistic work is featured in this month’s Coastal Currents Arts Festival in Hastings.”
A temporary roof was recently installed for free by Hastings based Dynamic Scaffolding of which Linda recently said: “We are touched and overwhelmed by the generosity of this local company. It is so public-spirited.”
A plant sale at the greenhouse on Saturday, September 10, raised over £100 and more than 100 visitors toured the greenhouse on Heritage Open Day on Sunday, September 11. More plants are needed by volunteers to sell for fund-raising.
Visit the group’s website at: www.greenhousealexpark.com and/or join the project’s #Bagsof Help campaign on Facebook and Twitter.