Incredible Edible garden under threat in Old Town

Derrick Knight (kneeling) with community volunteers planting cherry trees at Christine Ledger Square in Leamington

Derrick Knight (kneeling) with community volunteers planting cherry trees at Christine Ledger Square in Leamington

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A community garden which was planted to provide free fruit and vegetables to people in Old Town could be removed despite the efforts of volunteers.

The garden, planted in Christine Ledger Square almost two years ago is part of the Incredible Edible project, which began in Leamington three years ago.

Poor quality ground was transformed to a fertile growing area which, after the removal of large quantities of concrete, is now producing a healthy crop of potatoes.

But while various initiatives were attempted and after three bids for grants to pay for an expert to facilitate the project, the land was neglected which led to Warwick District Council’s housing department making the decision to remove it and replace it with gravel.

Derrick Knight, founder of the Incredible Edible group, said: “The decision has been taken based on anecdotal but undocumented comments by some residents and the results of a dubious survey.

“I’m really concerned that the district council is choosing to deny local residents the right to grow healthy and nutritious food where they live.”

Volunteers planted herbs and strawberries at the garden over the weekend while other work has included repairing and repainting of the substation and installation of compost bins, steps and planters.

County councillor Jonathan Chilvers, district councillors Ian Davison, town councillor Jill Barker and town councillor Janet Alty are all supporting the scheme.

Mr Knight said: “This decision must be overturned and I would like to invite residents to show their support for the continuation of the garden by writing to your councillor, meeting at the garden at 4pm on Sunday or by leaving comments on the Facebook page Leamington Spa Incredible Edible.