Monday, 31 October 2011

Network Rail arches - tenancy agreement

We are pleased to confirm that we have now agreed and signed the Network Rail tenancy agreement for the four railway arches, nearest to the railway line and adjacent to the Green Heart Den.

Thank you to all who made this possible, it was very much appreciated.

Barrow's Wildside Project Events Guide

Cumbria Wildlife Trust have produced an events guide for Barrow's Wildside project which includes many FREE wildlife activites taking place between November 2011 and March 2011.

You can view and download a copy of the events guide  here

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

New hand made trellis

Valued volunteers David, Karen and Bryan proudly demonstrating their handywork in making and installing the new trellis for the large planting boxes. Thank you all.

Junior Wardens seed potting session

Cumbria Wildlife Trust Officer Sue Thurley and Central and Hindpool Junior wardens potting up wild seeds which were previously collected locally.

Friday, 21 October 2011

New trellis for the arbours large planting boxes

New hand made trellis, constructed from slate batons, is being made and installed to the arbours six large planting boxes. This work is being conducted by our team of valued volunteers.

Big thank you to; Lee, Bryan and David for their hard work

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

On site pre contract meeting

Ed Nelson and Craig Wigley from Continental Landscapes and Graham Bromley our project coordinator pictured during todays onsite pre contract meeting. Also present was John Nuttall, Consultant Landscape Architect for Groundwork, who are project managing the construction process. Following the meeting Continental Landscapes are to be formally appointed as contractors for the community grow your own scheme. It is hoped that they can begin construction work within two - four weeks, following the release of  planning conditions.

Groundwork, on behalf of Marsh Street Arches and Garden CIC, are responsible for the delivery of the grow your own scheme in their role as:
  • The Accountable Body, Groundwork will be responsible for issues such as fund raising, fund management, submitting funding bids, drawing down funding and paying contractors. They have confirmed funding from various sources such as; Marks and Spencer, WREN, BBC Communities for Health, Cumbria Waste Management Environmental Trust and NHS Cumbria.
  • Project Managers, working on behalf of the Marsh Street Arches and Garden CIC, Groundworks responsibility will include among other issues; the provision of landscape design services, producing contract documentation, organising the tendering process, overseeing and supervising all work onsite, inspecting progress and ensuring quality of workmanship.
Following construction of the scheme Marsh Street Arches and Garden Community Interest Company, under an 85 year lease for the land secured from Barrow Borough Council, and with support from our user group, will be responsible for managing and maintaining the scheme for the benefit of its users and the wider community.

Membership of  our community grow your own scheme user group includes; local residents, local service providers, local schools, youth organisations, other voluntary groups and the local authority.

You can download a copy of our community grow your own scheme user policy here

Saturday, 15 October 2011

Friday, 14 October 2011

Installing edging to the gravel area.

Big thank you to Karen, Lee, David and Bryan our team of valued volunteers for helping to install edging to the gravel area. It was very much appreciated.

Volunteer update - OGS oral history group

We have received confirmation from members of the oral history group, Graham Robinson and Alan Postlethwaite, that due to other committments they do not wish to continue their volunteer work for Marsh Street Arches and Garden CIC following completion of the Our Green Space funded oral history film at the end of this month.

We would like to take this opportunity and thank Graham and Alan for their work and wish them every success in the future. Thank you both.

GreenSpace - health and well being

Parks provide a much needed space for people to take part in organised or informal sports and provide recreational opportunities for those unable or unwilling to join a gym or leisure centre. We all know that a walk in the park can help clear the mind and the mental health benefits of parks and green space are well documented.

Did you know

  • Potential psychological and mental health benefits from exposure to nature are not limited to exposure in the countryside only; within urban and semi-urban settings, access to green, open spaces can have a beneficial effect.
    Nature and Psychological Well-being, Mentality (2003)
  • There is increasing evidence that access to high quality green spaces can produce measurable improvements to stress levels in a relatively short space of time.
    Julia Thrift, Journal of Public Mental Health (2005)
  • For every 10% increase in green space there was a reduction in health complaints equivalent to a reduction of 5 years age.
    Dr William Bird, Natural Fit (2004)
  • Obesity has increased by 50% in adults in the past decade.
    2006 Coronary Heart Disease Statistics, British Heart Foundation (2006)
  • The Government aims to increase participation in physical activity from 32% to 70% by 2020.
    Dr William Bird, Natural Fit (2004)
  • Only 11% of adults claimed to use a park to take part in formal organised sporting a ctivity with the most popular activity being football (7% of all adults).
    The Use of Public Parks in England, Sport England (2003)
  • Walking is the most popular sporting activity (in parks) with over a third of men and women in the UK participating regularly.
    Taking Part: The National Survey of Culture, Leisure and Sport,
    National Statistics (2006)
  • Going for a walk was the most popular leisure activity of visitors to parks (75%), followed by taking children to a play area (43%) and sitting and enjoying the surroundings (28%).
    The Use of Public Parks in England, Sport England (2003)
For more information please visit the GreenSpace website here

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Greengate Street bridge structure - water seepage becomes worse

Inspite of the excellent work of AMCO Amalgamated Construction in conducting minor repairs (repairing and replacing loose and damaged brickwork, removing vegetation growing out of the structure and repointing)  to areas of brickwork on Greengate Street bridge structure, as commissioned by Network Rail, the water seeping through Greengate Street bridge structure is visible getting worse, as the videos below will hopefully demonstrate. These weres taken today, 12/10/2011, on the south side of the bridge structure, facing the Green Heart Den.

It has been suggested that as the seepage is visibly worse during and after rainfall that, in all likelihood, the source of the water is from the road surface and/or road drains above on Greengate Street.

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Community grow your own scheme pre - contract meeting

We are looking forward to the community grow your own schem pre - contract meeting with Groundwork and Continental Landscapes which is to take place on the north plot next week.

Saturday, 8 October 2011

Additional cordless hedge trimmers

Additional cordless hedge trimmers as provided from a grant we received from Cumria County Councils, local committee for Barrow. Thank you.

Installation of the reptile fence

Big thank you to our volunteers and Central and Hindnpol Neighbourhood Wardens for helping to install the 65 metres of reptile fence. It was very much appreciated.

Friday, 7 October 2011

Community grow your own scheme update

  • The phase one habitat survey, as required as part of the conditions in the planning approval has now been completed to the satisfaction of ecologist Penny Ward.
  • The planning department has suggested a new clause be added to the land lease in regard the growing of edible foods in the future. This suggested clause has been agreed by the CIC who are awaiting the issue of a new lease agreement to include the amendment.
  • The new wall, gated entrance and railings have now been completed.
  • Groundwork, who are project managing the construction phase of the scheme on our behalf, have suggesed that if all goes well; the minor planing approval conditions could be released within the next tow weeks and the scheme could potentially be completed by mid December 2011.
If you have any questions for the Groundwork Project Management Team you can contact them at:

    Thursday, 6 October 2011

    FREE Wildlife craft workshop

    A common lizard. Checking the weather, is it time to hibernate yet.......

    The Common Lizard, is a very useful indicator species of the health of habitats.
    There are six native species of reptile in the UK and all receive protection under UK law. Smooth snakes and sand lizards have a highly restricted distribution in the UK and receive full and stringent protection under The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations 2010 and the Wildlife and Countryside Act (1981) (as amended).

    Slow worms, common lizards, adders and grass snakes are common in the UK and receive partial legal protection under Schedule 5 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act: it is illegal to intentionally kill, injure, trade or sell these species.

    You can find more information about UK reptiles and amphibians here

    Wednesday, 5 October 2011

    Love Barrow 2012 nominations are now open.......

    The Love Barrow Awards 2012 nominations are open from today. This is your chance to nominate that special person who goes the extra mile in your community. We are looking for nominations for;

    Citizen of the Year - awarded to people who have made an outstanding contribution to Barrow and Furness through their voluntary and/or professional contribution to community life.
    Young Citizen of the Year - awarded to a young person aged 18 and under who has made an outstanding contribution to Barrow and Furness through their voluntary and/or professional contribution to community life.

    Group/Project of the Year - awarded to a group or project that has made a real difference to the lives of people in the local community through their voluntary and/or professional work.

    Teacher of the Year - acknowledges the contribution of those who promote learning in our community in an inspirational way. The nominations can include people from formal and community based settings.

    Carer of the Year - to recognise the valuable contribution that carers make to our community, this includes professional or voluntary work and might include nurses, social workers or family carers.

    Sports Volunteer of the Year - recognises the outstanding voluntary contribution of individuals who are the lifeblood of our local sporting community.

    Environmental Volunteer of the Year - acknowledges the outstanding voluntary contribution of individuals to maintaining our natural environment and working to promote sustainable living.

    The Courage Award - this award seeks to recognise the real depths of courage that ordinary people show in difficult circumstances. This might include acts of bravery by people in the emergency services or ordinary members of the public who are ‘first on the scene’ of emergency or critical situations. It also seeks to recognise the daily courage that people show in facing life’s challenges, such as illness and loss, and the courage of individuals to turn these difficult circumstances into positive action for the good of the community.

    North plot strawberries are looking, and tasting, good..........

    Monday, 3 October 2011

    For Ian, our colleague and our friend............

    Although it is difficult to write words to describe someone during this difficult and tragic time we would like to offer our condolences to the family and friends of Ian Bell, our colleague and friend who tragically passed away at the weekend.
    Ian was not just a great asset to the Marsh Street Arches and Garden Community Interest Company, but a lovely person to work with.  Ian's easy manner and calm approach,  no matter what trials and tribulations we were going through, were a great help to all involved.
    Ian's commitment to the project and the wider local community was obvious for all to see. He was a gentleman, and he will be sadly missed.

    Sunday, 2 October 2011

    Hog roast event proves to be successful

    It is estimated that approximately 300 people of all age groups attended our FREE autumn hog roast event. The event, funded by Our Green Space, included a hog roast as provided by Hartleys of Dalton,  refreshments and entrtainment from local band Sidewalk.

    Our Green Space project officer Carol Douglas, Marsh Street Arches and Garden CIC Dirctor Scott Gomersall, Barrow Mayor John Murphy and his wife, and lady Mayoress, Eleanor.

    Barrow Mayor John Murphy and his wife, and lady Mayoress, Eleanor meeting staff from Hartleys of Dalton.
    Thank you to all who attended what was a most enjoyable event.  A special thank you to all those who helped on the day, it was very much appreciated.  We could not have provided this without you.

    Additional pictures can be viewed on our Flickr photo gallery here.