Wasteland to be tranquil retreat
PUBLISHED: 13:41 07 April 2009 | UPDATED: 13:31 24 August 2010
by Will Davies A derelict library garden is being transformed from a builders dumping ground into a tranquil retreat to relax and enjoy a good book. Volunteers have already got to work clearing 20 years of building materials, car parts a
by Will Davies
A derelict library garden is being transformed from a builders' dumping ground into a tranquil retreat to relax and enjoy a good book.
Volunteers have already got to work clearing 20 years of building materials, car parts and broken computers from the old garden of Kilburn Library, in Salusbury Road, Queen's Park.
The library's former manager, Linda George, managed to secure a £5,000 grant from the Neighbourhood Working Fund and assembled a team of expert volunteers.
Jay Venn, a professional gardener from Kensal Green, said: "It was a real wasteland and people have been chucking things into it for about 20 years.
"It hadn't been used for ages as the library hadn't had a budget for it.
"It has been quite hard graft so far digging out the rubbish. It is at a very early stage and it's not picturesque yet!"
Once finished the garden will be an oasis of calm, with raised beds to make it accessible to people in wheelchairs.
Ms Venn added: "It's going to be a reading garden, with lots of benches with lots of little places where people can sit quietly and read - an adjunct of the library.
"The garden is L-shaped and the top bit is going to be a children's garden. We had a open day last year and had lots of children made designs of how they wanted the garden to look, including a tree house, bookshelves and bean bags. It's going to be great."
The City of London Corporation supplied workers and a lorry to get rid of the first ton of rubbish and organisers are looking to enlist anyone interested in 'hard-graft volunteering'.
Monthly 'digging days' have been set up where willing workers can go along and get stuck in.
The next is April 25, where from 2pm to 4pm a professional garden designer will be offering free basic training in horticulture.
Karl Hemsley, the library's new manager, said: "It is absolutely fantastic. Everyone is being incredibly enthusiastic and put in awful lot of work - it really was a mess before. Even though they are very keen gardeners they see it as a garden for the library where people can sit and read in peace.
"My predecessor Linda George really got things organised - lots of credit must go to her. I don't think it would have happened without her."
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