Get growing with Greenlink

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An event is being held on Saturday at Forgewood Community Centre to celebrate the new growing season for the Greenlink allotments.

The ‘meet and greet’ day invites individual plot holders and community group holding plots to get to know each other better and share their ambitions for the new season.

The event will begin at 1pm with an informal gathering of the allotment holders when Councillor Michael Ross will officially welcome guests and wish the plot holders a fruitful year.

The attendees will then be taken on a site visit where an apple tree will be planted to mark the occasion.

The Greenlink allotments comprise of 33 individual plot holders as well as eight community group plots, which are held by a variety of groups including schools, nurseries and special needs organisations.

Susan Rutherford, Greenlink project coordinator, said: “The Greenlink has made a huge difference to people in local communities in the seven years since it started.

“But I think the allotment project has really begun to bring people together in a special way as young and old, traditional Forgewood folk and new arrivals can all learn from each other and share a great experience as well as the fruits of their labour.”

North Lanarkshire Council has been the largest contributor to the cost of the project which is managed by Central Scotland Forest Trust.

It is also funded by Scottish Natural Heritage and The Robertson Trust, while Saturday’s event is supported by NHS Lanarkshire and the Motherwell Community Forum.

Michelle Battersby, North Lanarkshire Council’s local regeneration manager, said: “The allotments are bringing new life to Forgewood, having transformed a derelict piece of land and bringing local people together.

“The land allows people to grow their own healthy produce and for school pupils to learn about nature and see their own fruit and vegetables grow.

“It is an excellent example of partnership working and, on behalf of North Lanarkshire Council, I would like to thank everyone who has helped make this project happen.”

June McKenna, of The Richmond Fellowship Scotland, one of the community groups which holds a plot at the Greenlink allotments, said: “We are delighted to have an allotment.

“It will give Get Connected members (a Richmond Fellowship Scotland Service) the opportunity to get together while learning new skills or re-awakening old ones and to be part of and contribute to this community.

“It’s what Get Connected is about.”