Lockdown-hampered community garden set to spring back to life after volunteer's efforts

The seed library set up at the community garden in Framlingham. L-R Stephanie Bennell and Derek Johnson

The seed library set up at the community garden in Framlingham. L-R Stephanie Bennell and Derek Johnson - Credit: Lesley Clouting

In the shadow of the castle on the hill, a group of green-fingered enthusiasts are bringing a community garden back to life. 

The community garden was founded about 10 years ago by residents living in Framlingham and is looked after by Greener Fram, an environmental group in the town.

However, by 2019 the site, which overlooks the mere near the town's famous castle, was in much need of refurbishment. 

Work began to transform the space in 2020 and had just got into full swing when the pandemic hit, pushing the project back 18 months. 

Fortunately in recent weeks the gardeners have been back out in force once more to bring the 1/3 acre space back to life. 

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New raised beds have been built and a fruit cage has also been erected to protect the group's raspberries, red currants and blackcurrants once they are planted from nearby birds. 

A free seed library has also been installed where people can share their seeds, cuttings and plants. 

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Lesley Clouting from Greener Fram said that it was great the project was coming closer to reality. 

"There was a point where I thought we would never get there," she said. 

"We'd ploughed it and then lockdown set in.

"I'm pleased to see the end of the tunnel. It looks like it's going to be a fruitful ending."

The preparation work is set to continue next week as the garden looks to host it's first working party. 

Around 20 willing volunteers have signed up to carry out more preparation work on September 6. 

It's hoped that the garden will be opened next spring, ready for the coming growing season.

One the garden re-opens fully to the public Greener Fram are planning to have weekly dig days on Wednesdays and family activity days on a Sunday once a month. 

If funds allow Greener Fram are also planning to install a bench so visitors can enjoy the fantastic view across the mere of Framlingham Castle. 

At the community days, the project are planning to have activities to help people get to grips with gardening. 

"We have quite a few adults wanting to learn," said Mrs Clouting. 

The preparation day will be held at the site on September 6 between 10am and 12pm. 

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