Gardens blossom into art and new friends for residents
Published by KBarnes for New Charter Housing Trust Group in Housing and also in Communities, Education, Environment, Health
Student Jordan Baines from New Charter Academy shows off her butterfly creation.
Gardeners and young families have been touring each other’s patches to create pieces of art for a new project with the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester.
Residents from gardening groups in Ashton, Tameside, teamed up with local families and artists over the summer to visit gardens and parks and the people that look after them.
The project called ‘How Does Your Garden Grow?’ was set up by the theatre and housing association New Charter Homes to encourage parents and students from the New Charter Academy and nearby residents to get to know each other better.
While out and about in the area, they took part in gardening-themed art classes led by the professional artists to make mini gardens, bugs and mosaics.
Some of the artwork will now be put on show at a communal garden at the New Charter Academy in Ashton.
How Does Your Garden Grow? is part of a three-year partnership between New Charter Homes, its academy and the Royal Exchange Theatre to help bring the community and the school closer together.
So far the project has worked with more than 200 people in the area with activities like writing and photography workshops, theatre trips and behind the scenes tours.
Amanda Dalton, the theatre’s associate director (education) said: “Art projects are fun for everyone and we want to give people the chance to mix with different people and try out new skills.
“We hope it will give people of all ages more confidence to try new things and be creative – it could even help some to find a route back into work.”
Tony Powell, New Charter’s executive director of neighbourhoods added: “This project has given local gardening groups the chance to meet each other and they’ve enjoyed each other’s company so much that they have decided to meet on a regular basis to share ideas.
“It’s a really great result and it shows how projects like this are benefiting real-life people.”