Great Things Growing In Havelock North

A community garden and adjoining recreational space at Anderson Park in Havelock North will soon become more family friendly with the installation of a place to shelter for visitors to the area. For six years local volunteers have tended the gardens off Mangarau Crescent and, with support from a variety of local businesses and organisations, have slowly added to the space to provide for other games and activities – such as hoops for volleyball and basketball. A $6000 grant from the Hastings District Council’s most recent contestable funding round will help their efforts, to be spent on shifting a container onto the site that will be used as shelter for families and groups that regularly use the park. Community group co-ordinator Bob Hall said the lined and altered container had been donated by the Salvation Army, and that the council funding would be spent on moving it, as well as purchasing kitset material to construct a roof and lean-to shelter. “At present there is no shelter if it rains and no place where groups can gather – this area is frequently used for games and family gatherings, as well as tending and harvesting the gardens. “Most Sunday afternoons Peak Vision Church put on a free sausage sizzle and local children and adults come and play, talk and have a snack. “The idea is to bring in more activities and attractions to encourage more people to use the area, and having facilities like this will help encourage that, with people able to take shelter no matter what the weather.” This would build on the efforts that had already seen the area becoming something of a community hub, with produce in the gardens grown and harvested by local residents. “A number of people have taken ownership of a section of garden and plant and maintain their own area. Other areas are planted in bulk,” he said, aided by donations of vegetable plants by local businesses. The council’s social and cultural committee allocated grants to 32 community organisations in this funding round and committee chairman Malcolm Dixon said the Anderson Park community garden was a fine example of how local residents could support each other to meet a local need. “Through determination, collegiality, energy and willpower they have achieved something they should all be proud of. “The community grants committee was delighted to be able to assist them with the much needed shelter.” Photo: Anderson Park Community Group members Bob Hall and Shelley Draper say the addition of a place to shelter will enhance the community garden and surrounding area. Posted: 6 September 2018