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Mendip wildlife garden, HLF Art & History Exhibition
Location: Beecroft28 July 2018 - 30 August 2018
Beecroft Art Gallery
An exhibition bringing Cultiv8uk, South Essex homes, Essex Record Office, Metal Culture, Heritage Lottery Fund, Epic Quest Education, Mendip youth club, Eastwood primary school, Belfairs High school, Project 49 together to tell the story of the Mendip Wildlife Garden through art, the written word, audio recordings and a very special 6 part cookery demo headed by Southends very own multi-talented community worker and expert perma-culturist Graham Burnett.
‘The Mendip Wildlife garden started life as a plot of land encircled by houses, in the middle of a housing estate in Westcliff, In the early fifty’s this land was turned into allotments, which for a short while worked very well, but unfortunately as there is no power or water supply to the area, this soon became a waste ground for fly tipping. In the late 2011 the local Residents Association, decided to put a vote to the residents who live on the Mendip Estate to see what they would like done with this area of land. The choices were either a playground or a wildlife garden. The wildlife garden won the vote so in late 2011 the work started on clearing the land, with the help of local business and residents this was eventually finished and the garden was opened in September 2011.
Because the land had been left to go wild the wildlife naturally came in. So the wildlife garden committee with the help of local children on the estate very carefully helped the wildlife from begin disturbed too much, The garden has since then on gone from strength to strength, Local children and residents, often play, or walk their dogs through the garden, and local photographers take vantage of the abundance of wildlife that is in the garden.
Since 2016 the garden has now its own Project Manager, who is very in tune with the local children and the garden has blossomed under his leadership, The garden now has various groups that’s now come in and use the garden, to learn and help look after the garden, and its wildlife, which then encourages them to take that knowledge home or back to schools and pass on what they have learned to others.
Securing a funding bid from the heritage lottery fund we now have the resources to really make an impact on the residents of the estate. Community collaboration and partnerships with organisations such as Metal culture, Essex record office, The heritage lottery, Cultiv8UK and many others.
The Garden is here for everyone to enjoy and share. Leaving a legacy for future generations is our aim. Growing Together and teaching the youth how the live in joy and harmony.’
The Mendip Wildlife Garden