Hastings park greenhouse project will encourage young people to get growing with free seeds

Park Greenhouse 1 SUS-190220-112155001
Park Greenhouse 1 SUS-190220-112155001

The new gardening season starts at Alexandra Greenhouse on March 3 with a free seed swap 11am till 3pm.

Everyone is welcome to come along to the greenhouse, in Alexandra Park, to exchange, donate or buy seeds.

Park Greenhouse 2 SUS-190220-112249001

Park Greenhouse 2 SUS-190220-112249001

Alexandra Park Greenhouse Group rescued the 100ft, 1930s greenhouse from neglect and decline, and secured a 25 year lease from Hastings Council.

It is now a working greenhouse again for the whole community to use as a vibrant horticultural and educational facility.

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Over the winter months volunteers have rebuilt a 25m brick cold frame to replace the original one lost through years of neglect.

The new frame has created additional growing space which the group are keen to fill with vegetables and new plants for spring and summer fund-raising sales.

Young visitors will also have an opportunity to try their hand at raising their own crops as the season progresses.

In January the power supply was installed, funded by community plant sales,The Finnis Scot Foundation, The Chalk Cliff Trust and The Isabelle Blackman Foundation.

The electricity supply will enable power tools to be used when funds are raised to start the restoration, as well as lighting for events and the provision of refreshments for those working in the greenhouse.

The group now need to apply for funding to continue the restoration.

Group chairman Linda Pearson said: “A new estimate of £70,000 has been prepared to restore the wood frame, refurbish the internal and external metalwork and re-glaze the roof with zinc and toughened glass.

“With the roof restored, the greenhouse can then realise it’s true potential as a community space we can all enjoy using to improve our gardening and horticultural expertise, and to encourage junior gardeners to come along and join in.

“We now have children’s groups and students from East Sussex College Hastings using the greenhouse on a regular basis for gardening and art sessions, you can really see the potential a fully restored greenhouse in the park would provide .

“Alexandra Park Greenhouse Group, asks you to please give your support by donating, fund-raising and volunteer to run events or help in the greenhouse.

“The greenhouse is open each Saturday (entrance on St. Helen’s Road) from 10:30 am to 1:30pm for plant sales and plant donations, the proceeds of which are used to cover the running costs.

“Come and visit this exceptional greenhouse which is a vital part of the horticultural heritage of Alexandra Park.”

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