Tag Archive: norwich


Wonderful White Wisteria outside St.Michael-at-Plea Church, Norwich, recently.

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Norwich Planter

I spotted this beautiful Sea Thrift grouping in a street planter near Norwich Castle the other day. I must say the City is doing great things with it’s roundabouts and street planting.

Old School Gardener

wp_20161126_11_43_39_proI mentioned that I’d attended the 10th anniversary celebration of Norfolk Master Composters last week at the Roman Catholic Cathedral in Norwich.  Apart from the tour of the Cathedral roof and tower we were treated to a tour of the Cathedral Garden by head gardener Zanna.

Zanna, formerly a horticultural lecturer at nearby Easton College, is a volunteer and works with a group of others to develop and maintain this quiet space ‘wrapped in the arms’ of the cathedral. Over the last few years she’s led the design and development of a series of spaces where people can relax, contemplate the world and get stuck into food growing alongside ornamental gardening. Inspired by the former Priest here, who wanted the garden to be free of any religious iconography, Zanna has stayed true to that vision and despite pressure, has managed with her fellow volunteers,  to create a special, ‘neutral’ place.

I especially liked the recently completed retaining  wall on top of which sits a wonderful lead urn that has been turned into a water feature. This was created around the same time as the cathedral (i.e. towards the end of the 19th century) and features Ibex and Mouflon heads in relief as well as fruit and flowers. This is lit from underneath and because of its elevated position is a real eye catcher. Nearby a stone seat has been created as a ‘wedding seat’ for those all important photo opportunities.

Another nice features are a wire net figure set under an ancient Cherry Tree (she’s called ‘Nettie’!) with surrounding planting and stumps that help to soften the bare walls of the cathedral Narthex. And there’s wildlife area where children in particular can learn about different plants, birds and insects.

And tucked away and a tribute to Zanna’s recycling and upcycling skills, is a food production area featuring low raised beds, composting area and fruit garden. And an interesting feature is the large underground reservoir that provides the garden’s water … this created from former underground cells in Norwich Gaol, which stood here before the cathedral was built.

This is a special place for the volunteers who work here and it provides a calm space in which to get in touch with self and nature…a true place of spirit one might say!

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nfNorwich FarmShare is a community supported agriculture scheme providing delicious seasonal, organic vegetables to their members at a weekly Hub in Norwich. Their vision is for a fair and sustainable food system that roots a healthy resilient community in the land and to each other.

A not-for-profit cooperative it works with small-scale, agro-ecological farmers and growers in Norfolk, modelling sustainable urban food supply. In October 2015, Norwich FarmShare received notice to quit their growing site to the east of Norwich, the land had been leased for five years from a local farm.

The Trustees decided to commission a feasibility study to consider other potential growing sites in Norfolk and the potential for restarting the scheme at a new site. A grant was received from The Big Lottery’s Awards For All programme to appoint an assessment team and external consultants, and fund relevant research and local consultation. The study commenced in June 2016 and is nearing completion.

captureThe Group now want to further consult on the feasibility study and are holding a community gathering on Sunday 11th December, between 3pm and 6pm at the Friends Meeting House, Upper Goat Lane, Norwich.

Further information: Norwich Farm Share

Old School Gardener

WP_20150803_10_44_29_ProI’ve posted about the Plantation Garden in Norwich before. A couple of days ago I had a few things to do in Norwich, so I took the chance to pay it another visit. It was a lovely sunny morning and the place was nearly deserted; I sat, secreted away in this beautiful spot. Enjoy the pictures…

Old School Gardener

 

I went into Norwich today, where I’ve seen several very nicely planted roundabouts in the past. This one was on my walking route, so here it is…

Old School Gardener

Looking across the War Memorial gardens to The Forum

Looking across the War Memorial gardens to The Forum

SteveHere’s a link to a nice little film about this project which my Master Gardener friend Steve has helped to set up and develop. A great example of the generations working with each other.

Steve has run many growing sessions that bring together old and young members of the community for their mutual benefit. He played a key role in establishing the Project in autumn 2011 with children from Catton Grove Primary School, older volunteers from Age UK, and staff from Mile Cross library, Norwich.

As well as learning about growing food in a sustainable manner, the project helps older people enhance their social contact and sense of purpose, and provides children with mentoring and adult role models. Steve recalls,

“I delivered a presentation at Catton Grove School for the kids (yrs 4 and 5), teachers, and residents from sheltered housing close to the Library. There were 30-40 kids present and 7 potential volunteers. From that we got a few design ideas and a list of vegetables, herbs and flowers that they’d most like to grow.”

Old School Gardener

Correa via the Exotic Garden, Norwich

Correa via the Exotic Garden, Norwich

Old School Gardener

utopia 40k on eastern electricity building norwich by rory macbeth and students of school of art and design 2006The 40,000 words of Thomas More’s ‘Utopia’ painted onto the sides of a redundant Electricity building in Norwich by Rory McBeth and students of Norwich School of Art and Design (2006).

Old School Gardener

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