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Hastings & St. Leonards on-line community newspaper

Help raise the roof for the Alexandra Park Greenhouse!

A campaign to help put a permanent roof on the Alexandra Park Greenhouse continues to blossom but still needs support. The Let’s Raise the Roof crowdfunding campaign began last August and has thus far accumulated £4,939 of its £10,000 target. There is still two weeks left to offer any support you can to help complete the project and restore the structure to its former glory. The Alexandra Park Greenhouse Group have issued the following appeal. Words by Lynda Foy, photos by Colin Foy.

Volunteers are counting on the public to help them fulfil their dreams for a community project that is blossoming.

Let’s Raise the Roof, a month-long Crowdfunding campaign to help put a permanent roof on the greenhouse at Alexandra Park, Hastings, began on Monday 17 August with an appeal to supporters to raise at least £10,000 towards work to complete the project.

Originally, volunteers had the uphill task of raising £200,000 to fully restore the 1930s greenhouse which they took over in 2013. Now a generous private donation has been pledged that will cover the restoration of the teak frame and replacement glazing bars. The funds will also pay for toughened glass in the roof’s upper and lower ventilation windows and gable ends, plus repairs to the cast iron ventilation system, downpipes and internal staging.

Money raised by the Crowdfunding appeal will provide lighting and power so that the greenhouse can be open all year, re-pointing of ageing brickwork, construction of a perimeter fence and emergency gate and improvements to the floor and interior.

Donors of more than £20 will receive a cotton bag and an invitation to a thank-you party in the park when the restoration has started and Covid-19 guidance allows.

Linda Pearson, chairman of the Alexandra Park Greenhouse Group, said:  “The greenhouse is becoming very vulnerable as 30 years without glazing has taken its toll, but it has not give up yet and neither have we!

“To continue to breathe life into the greenhouse, we need the support of the people of Hastings, St Leonards and beyond.  A bare structure can’t fulfil its potential to provide benefit to the community. Please help us to complete the transformation.”

Pictured: Eddie Weekes, one of the groups campaigners, displaying his cacti and succulents.

The group, which became a charity in 2018, has been given donations amounting to £25,000 to date from many local organisations, and this has paid for the 100ft structure to be made temporarily watertight. The upper ventilation system has been restored, electricity has been brought to the site and its brick cold frame has been replaced. This has allowed volunteers to cultivate plants to sell at their weekly Saturday and Wednesday gardening sessions, providing a small but regular income.

Linda added: “However, without major financial input, structural work can go no further; restoration is essential for its future to blossom.”

The space has already hosted various groups, including the Education Futures Trust, an early learning group; East Coast College assisted education students who established a vegetable and herb growing areas; pupils from Sacred Heart School who studied the greenhouse’s carnivorous plant collection; and Halloween events.

The greenhouse  is open for plant sales and donations on Saturdays, 10.30am-1.30pm, and Wednesdays, 11am-1pm. Entrance is via St Helen’s Road, next to the park’s Idverde landscape company depot.

To donate to the campaign visit the link here.

You can also visit http://www.ourgreenhouse.org  for information of our work to date and watch our video at https://youtu.be/KxOYtb3WaQY

 

 

 

Posted 12:20 Friday, Sep 4, 2020 In: Grassroots

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