Working on a Wakehurst wonderland! New garden plan is unveiled

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Plans for a new community garden featuring wildflower meadows, herbs, shrubs, trees, and much more, are being considered by councillors in Mid and East Antrim.

Under the proposal, the garden – a shared space for people of all ages, abilities and backgrounds – would be located next to an existing outdoor gym, play area, playing fields and community centre, creating a hub of activity in Wakehurst, Ballymena.

Members of Mid and East Antrim Borough Council’s Operational Committee were shown plans for the site at this month’s meeting.

Chair of the Committee, Councillor Dr Mark McKinty, said afterwards: “This is a hugely ambitious and exciting project which I am sure would be warmly welcomed.

“Community gardens provide easier access for elderly participants and those with disabilities than traditional allotment projects.

“They also require less physically demanding work than managing an allotment, as the work on a community garden is shared.

“Such gardens provide neighbours with the opportunity to interact and create a sense of community ownership and bolster civic pride.

“It was very useful to see the sketches and images showing how this garden could look. The draft concept plan was agreed by members of the committee and a community consultation is now being planned.”

Seating and picnic tables could also be provided within the Wakehurst community garden, council officers said, along with a polytunnel and cabin.

Planning approval has not yet been granted for the proposed works.

Residents in the Harryville/Wakehurst area, along with users of the Wakehurst playing facilities, are encouraged to take part in the consultation. Details will announced in due course.