Community Green Heroes:

In the last two years I have had the privilege of working and volunteering in green spaces around the Havens. I see the results of people’s commitment to community and preserving the natural habitats around us. It warms my heart to see the passion, care and time people take in looking after each other and the green spaces around them.

In the Havens, there is a wealth of community projects all supporting the need to preserve our green spaces and get the community growing. Fantastic projects like the Denton Community Garden, the Havens Community hub reducing food waste, preventing it from going to landfill and helping address community need. The group Riverside Park and its planting on land, once wasteland, has seen a huge increase of wildlife in an area that now sees new species and offers a beautiful walking route for all of the family. Next to this the beautiful Valley Ponds, a haven for all things amphibians. All over Newhaven BN9 Trees have been planting fruit trees in people’s gardens. Newhaven Green Centre offers a repair café, a sharing library and ingenious ways to reduce and recycle waste, all working towards fighting climate change. Up in Peacehaven, the community garden and Orchard provide crucial green spaces offering the local community space to grow food, learn new tips on growing and are a haven for insect species. All run by volunteers aware of the pressing need to have areas that offer care for the earth and a space to grow and share food. 

 We at Greenhavens are committed to working with the community in educating adults and families in the need to get your garden/green space wilder. The past 6 months have seen Jessie and I engaging with community on wildflower walks, batwalks, Buglife and Froglife events. All learning and teaching each other on ways in which to make our gardens wilder and doing crucial surveys on what our green spaces contain and ways in which we can increase biodiversity. Fantastic to then see the community go out and use their new knowledge in their green spaces and helping others to go a little wilder. We have a new project coming, the “Gibbon Road Gardeners”, where we want to encourage people in the Gibbon Road area to grow their own food, share any excess and develop growing areas on the green spaces surrounding the area. I know there are families in this area already growing their own, it would a fantastic opportunity to share skills and knowledge and provide fresh fruit and veg to everyone in this community . We have 5 families already keen to get started and would love more! If anyone is interested in this project then please contact me at  I shall be organising a date and place  in September where we can meet to discuss ideas and move forward with this project so please email me to be added to the list.

All of these groups/organisations work from the heart, responding to community and our Earths needs. Armed with the knowledge we all must do what we can to preserve the natural world. As climate change increases, we must all look to see what we can do to become green community advocates. Our insect loss and lack of wild spaces in England has meant we must look to alternative ways of living in our urban spaces to avoid the catastrophe that will come if our bees and insects become extinct. Our community green champions are all heroes many working voluntarily to preserve and make resilient systems that will support the community and the planet in years to come. To all the Green Heroes out there thank you for providing hope for all our futures.

By Miriam Thundercliffe (Coordinator at Greenhavens Network).