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Meet the Allotment Team

Tara

Meet the people who make our wonderful allotment such a success! A dedicated team of staff and volunteers have been working flat out throughout the pandemic to grow colourful crops to add nutritional value to the meals our catering team are producing for the Emergency Food Response.

The allotment has become a valuable space for reflection and calm and has really helped our staff and volunteers to manage the crisis.

Tara Kinsella – Volunteer and Development Coordinator

Expert on: Creating safe and supportive spaces for people to feel they belong.

Favourite plants: Definitely lavender a multi-sensory delight.

Own garden: Backs on to lovely woodland. Full of wildlife visitors. Very shady so not the easiest to grow in. Irritating lawn! 

If I grew just one thing to eat, it would be: It would be beetroot! I love them :o)

Top tip for gardening: Be gentle with your plants.

Top tip for mental health: Here is a simple sensory self-care activity you can try.

  • Look at something nice (e.g. sky. flowers.)
  • Smell something nice (e.g. lavender, lemon, your favourite perfume)
  • Feel something nice (e.g. grass, smooth stones, hand cream or running water)
  • Taste something nice (e.g. herbal tea, chocolate or a piece of fresh fruit)
  • Listen to something nice (e.g. birds singing, your favourite song, a guided meditation)

Amy Jolly – Allotment Worker 

Expert on: Providing a space where people can get tea, fresh air and dirty hands.

Favourite plants: I do not have a favourite, I love them all! But you cannot really beat Wisteria or Magnolia in full bloom.

Own garden: Is a dog racetrack and a lovely south-facing place to collapse after a hard day’s graft at the plot!

If I grew just one thing to eat, it would be: Cucumbers.

Top tip for gardening: There is no right way and no rush. If it does not work, try again next year.

Top tip for mental health: Know your support network and do not be scared to use it.

Why is the new sensory garden at the allotment so important? I want there to be a quiet, reflective space at the plot for our volunteers and staff to be able to reflect and relax. Gardening is not all about hard work, it is about enjoying the outside and taking your time. You cannot rush the growing process.

Find out more about our allotment staff: 

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We know that the lifting of all existing restrictions with regard to COVID-19 will for many people be a relief and be welcome, but for others it will be causing great anxiety.

As an organisation we need to ensure that we are managing these changes carefully and have a service update detailing how we will be responding over the coming months.

Find out more