Well we seem always to be so lucky when we get organised down at St John's. The day was cold but dry and so was the ground under the trees, where we needed to continue the clearance work. With a good dry spell, it meant we could get a lot of fallen twigs and old Christmas trees burnt. So many festive Trees ended up here over the years.
A few false starts with the fire and then we were away, bustling about loading the wheelbarrows and filling bags with sorted rubbish and brambles. Everyone has their favourite activity to raise the spirits and soon just clearing the bramble trip-wires was not enough. The ground started to appear, dark and rich, giving a sense of the potential that lies within.
Another rowdier bunch ( no names; you know who you are!) set to attacking a stubborn root which would definitely get in our way come spring. A great way to put all that surplus energy to use! The fire burned up a treat and by the time lunch was served, the whole space looked ordered and cared for; the embers silvery-red.
We took turns keeping an eye on the inferno, while all enjoyed the winter vegetable soup and many home made cakes provided by Graham and Mary and the lovely ladies who help father John make the church so welcoming. Lunch at little tables allowed more folk to meet new faces and share life stories. I am always surprised and touched by the rich diversity of experience in a community like this that comes together to help.
By the end of the day, the whole space, not just the beds we made a year ago, but the whole space was a sight for sore eyes. Next stage will be getting a bunch of new faces in from CAFCO in the shape of strapping youngsters who will hopefully learn a bit about growing their own food and become another part of our little community, taking this enthusiasm for home grown food to their homes and schools.
P.s. Look out for a little feature in the Croydon Guardian on the Wednesday Feb 4th edition!
Learn more about the St John's Garden project.