Two urban households have removed the defining boundary between their front gardens to make one open positive space for gardening, socialising, wellbeing and environmental gain. The garden reflects Core Arts’ mission to support people experiencing mental health difficulties by promoting social inclusion and reconnecting individuals with their communities. The concept was inspired by designer Andy Smith-Williams' local Hackney walks during the pandemic lockdowns, in which he noticed more people were using their front gardens to meet and socialise from a distance with friends.
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Core Arts is a leading mental health creative education centre, based in Hackney, that promotes positive mental health and wellbeing through a college-like environment of creative learning. Providing quality education, training, employment and social enterprise initiatives that enable people who experience mental health issues to overcome barriers, fulfil their potential and participate fully in their community.
All plants, trees and materials from the garden are being repurposed by Core Arts to create a new community garden in a churchyard in Hackney, as an extension of their neighbouring sites. Consultation with Core Arts members, volunteers and local people directed the masterplan for the new garden, devised by Core Arts staff and Nemone Mercer of Core Landscapes.
Head to the link below to find out more about the garden and the people involved in its creation and legacy.