Pocket Park pops up in Whitehill & Bordon

Monday, 2 December, 2019

A patch of land in Whitehill & Bordon has been transformed into a pocket park and a mini fruit orchard.

The Whitehill & Bordon Community Trust (WBCT) has led the scheme to give an underused parcel of grass off Savile Crescent a new lease of life.

The pocket park has been planted with 21 apple trees and an attractive sculpture in the shape of an apple core. Working with East Hampshire District Council and Whitehill Town Council, the scheme is the start of the Whitehill & Bordon Community Trust Pocket Parks Project, with more planned around town.

In 2018 the Government made funding available to green-fingered communities wanting to make the most of unused public land.

WBCT received £15,000 The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government and another £5,000 from East Hampshire District Council.

Sian Manning, Events and Marketing Co-ordinator, said: “Pocket parks are small plots of land, often about the size of a tennis court, and mostly seen in urban spaces. They provide a green oasis which can help improve the physical and mental health of the communities using them.

“We are inviting local schools and groups to come and adopt a tree. These are everyone’s trees and we will be looking for community support in maintaining them and allowing everyone to enjoy the fruits from them for years to come.”

The apple core sculpture was built by Richard Evershed, of Hampshire Wood Projects, while the 21 apple trees were sourced from Southern Trees, at Blackmoor. The project was also supported by Whitehill Town Council and the Deadwater Valley Trust.

Clare Chester, Head of Regeneration at East Hampshire District Council, said: “Pocket parks are used for everything from a quiet escape from busy lives to physical exercise, growing vegetables, children’s play and community events.

“This will also form part of the wider Green Grid and Green Loop project linking open spaces with the walking and cycling routes around the town.”

In spring 2020, the WBCT will be working with the Future Skills Centre building a fruit planter and bench, designed to be accessible for all.

Anyone interested in adopting a tree or becoming involved in this project or similar projects can contact the WBCT on 01420 558085 or email info@wbcommunitytrust.co.uk.