Help Us Grow - Rockaway Forest Garden

We at Rockaway Park are creating a community forest garden, and we need your help!

Rockaway Forest Garden aims to create a multi-functional green space for the local and wider community that promotes permaculture principles, educates, encourages wildlife as well as providing a safe space to socialise and get in touch with nature.


Our vision is to create a magical forest garden built on permaculture principles accessible to all that not only provides a space for visitors to enjoy, but also acts as an educational resource and source of biodiversity that will ultimately benefit the community and environment as a whole. 

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THE STORY

Found on Cloud Hill, in Temple Cloud, Rockaway Park is home to an ever expanding community of diverse and interdependent talents. At the core of our disused quarry is a belief that collaboration and collectivism, sharing work, vision and ideas are how all great creations take hold and manifest.

Many of you may already know us as a hub for arts and live music events, and home to a wealth of talented artists and makers, their crazy machines, sculptures, and curiosities - a real buzzing hive of creativity! 

However... just a short walk round the corner from all this artistic activity is the site of our garden project - a south facing, acre and a half area a stray away off the public footpath that passes through it, of peace and tranquility with sweeping views stretching out as far as the eye can see - and we want to give it back to the community. 

The dream for our hillside garden space is big and although it’s already in motion, we are only at the beginning of realising it. Our vision is that Rockaway Forest Garden will grow and mature over the years and flourish into an oasis of permaculture, education, community involvement and sculptures as well as providing zero miles fresh produce for our fully vegan Green Room Cafe.

The next phase of the garden's development is coming in a whole new state of the world, in a time when so many of us have experienced hardships and isolation, especially those without access to gardens and safe outdoor spaces, which is one of our main drives of getting our garden growing.

As this is our first foray into reaching out for funding, we are fully aware that we are all struggling with these unusual circumstances, so we are only asking for contributions of anything you can afford to give - whether it be a financial donation, your time and knowledge, a plant/tree, a tool or simply by sharing our crowdfunder on your social media to support the cause - any and all help is gratefully received!

Many thanks to you all for your continued support for the Rockaway Park project over the years of it’s continuing evolution - that is the most valued contribution of all!

Keep reading for more info on the project below, plus check out our great rewards scheme we are offering. 

We’ll be in touch here with updates about our plans and actions, but we want you to get in touch as well and be a part of it! Experts, enthusiasts, volunteers, fans: all are welcome when restrictions lift - COVID rules and regs apply!

55232776_1615542108415128_r.jpegThanks to Keegan & Nina for this wonderful drawing that helps to visualise our garden project and what could be.


BE PART OF THE STORY AND HELP BRING THE FOLLOWING TO LIFE:

- A diverse fruit & nut orchard
- Loads of new plant life
- Create a pond
- Build a greenhouse to grow food
- Build a roundhouse, a multifunctional covered structure for talks, workshops, educational,  gatherings and more
- Install a waste water irrigation system 
- Plant a veggie patch
- Grow a medicinal herb garden
- Install a community compost station 
- Ongoing landscaping of the 45 degree slope to create paths that allow better access to less able folk


WHO WILL BENEFIT?

- The community, both local and beyond 
- The environment, encouraging both biodiversity and wildlife
- Students, tutors and other permaculture enthusiasts who are looking for a space to get involved in our projects or develop their own
- Those seeking a space that encourages wellness and mindfulness, especially for people who’ve been socially isolating over the last year locally or in nearby towns/cities who are in need a safe green space to re-acclimatise - green spaces are vital for our mental and physical well-being! 
- Individuals or groups looking for learning experiences or volunteer opportunities and ways to get involved in gardening activities, forest gardening and permaculture
- Artists and skilled craftspeople to provide commissions to as well as a space for presenting their skills and crafts, creating art installations and structures


HOW ARE WE GOING TO DO IT?

By sheer motivation, love and energy! and of course, none of this would be possible without our amazing gardeners Joci and Mem who are leading the way to create the forest garden, implementing their gardening knowledge and permaculture training. They have been working hard to transform the hillside from an overgrown tangle since October last year into what it is now. They will continue to oversee and drive the project for the foreseeable future. 

We already have a small force of fabulous volunteers (local and from Bristol) who kindly give their time on a weekly basis.

Discussions are being had with a number of groups and individuals to bring their knowledge or skills to help design our space and build the structures.


WHAT WE'VE DONE ALREADY

- Nitrogen fixing the soil by planting nitrogen fixing plants and trees (ongoing)
- First wave of trees planted
- New planters for trees, plasma cut from a huge repurposed steel tank
- More overgrown slope tamed
- First swale dug
- Veggie patches prepped for growing
- Some terracing

55232776_1615542644739435_r.jpegThanks again to Keegan & Nina for this beautiful illustration of one of our plasma cut metal tree planters, made from an old tank.


HOW YOU CAN HELP US GROW


Make a donation

All donations no matter how big or small will help towards:

- Buying fruit trees for our orchard
- Installing tree guards (as much as we love the deer, they keep nibbling our new trees!)
- Plants, seeds and compost (we hold plant swaps and use local manure, but somethings you still have to buy!)
- Building works, materials, tools and skilled people's time to build: a greenhouse, a roundhouse, a pond 
- Digging terraces and building reinforced beds 
- Supporting our wonderful gardeners to keep the project moving and alive

Volunteer with us

Come and join us! Bring your smiles, skills and/or enthusiasm and get involved. There is much to do and learn here and we can offer a healthy, vegan lunch in return for you time.

Donate plants, trees, seeds, tools or materials! 

By giving us something to grow or plant here, you will become part of our story too, as with all items donated to us, be it a tool or compost or even something more interesting we could reinvent...

This is an “eco-friendly” project, and wherever possible, we reuse and repurpose materials including but not limited to timber and metal… e.g. we plasma cut a huge tank into segments to use as our planters - nothing goes to waste here!

Share our page

Spread the word and the love and let others know about what we’re up to! 


OUR REWARDS SCHEME

Here's what we can offer in return for your kind donations...

£10 - Eternal love and gratitude 

£20 - Eternal love and gratitude and a Rockaway zine

£30 - Eternal love and gratitude and Rockaway china mug

£30 - Eternal love and gratitude and a Green Room Cafe vegan roast dinner (available any Sunday when restrictions lift)

£40 - Eternal love and gratitude and A3 letterpress print (pink milk float press) special edition, design tba

£50 - Eternal love and gratitude and a special edition A3 screenprint,(carryonscreening) design tba

£50 - Eternal love and gratitude and a specially printed fair trade ethical etc Rockaway T-shirt (same design as print)

£50 - Eternal love and gratitude and a heavy oak chopping board... branded in fire with a Rockaway logo

£60 - A tonne sack of rich organic compost (to stay on site) and limitless love and joy

£80 - Purchase and plant one fruit and nut tree and protect it from the deer here at Rockaway...plus limitless love and gratitude

£100 - A night in Rockaway Airbnb (midweek unless booked as part of a weekend stay), come meet us and have a look around and do a bit of digging if you like ;-)

£200 - A pair of hand made to order dungarees and eternal love and gratitude

£1500 - A huge, solid, carved bench handcrafted from The Magic Tree (that grew here and fell in a storm on the 25 Feb 2020, marking the start of this most unusual past 12 months) with engraved plaque with message/text/song lyric etc of your choice, and forever eternal love

Let us know if you'd like to claim your reward and we will make the arrangements!


More info 

The fine folk at Bluurg TV! have made a documentary. To see the full doc about the garden project click HERE  - meet all of those involved and discover the bigger picture of our vision.  Also a massive thanks to Crowander (crowander.com) for the music.


Visit the Rockaway website/social for more information on what goes on here in this special and unique place. Take a look at our image gallery and find out Rockaway came to be and why it matters so much.

Website:    https://rockawaypark.co.uk/

Instagram:    @rockawaypark.co.uk

Facebook:    @rockawaypark.co.uk


PHOTO GALLERY


Meet Joci the gardener and one of our volunteers Sabi...

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One of our plasma cut planters awaiting it's new tenant (tree)

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New trees now in the ground, with homemade guards in place to deter any uninvited visitors (generally deer) snacking on them!

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There is still loads of space to clear (mainly brambles) ... you can see our vantage point handcrafted bench on the left, sitting alongside the public footpath leading up from the road and along the field beyond.

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A terraced bed to avoid erosion on the slope, reinforced with railway sleepers... this year they will provide growing space for annual veggies, but may later on will become part of the forest garden and home trees.


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  • rebecca martin 
    • £50 
    • 2 mos
  • Hidehito Nakamura 
    • £30 
    • 2 mos
  • Milli Lake 
    • £50 
    • 2 mos
  • Ellie B 
    • £20 
    • 2 mos
  • Andrea Standivan 
    • £10 
    • 2 mos
See all

Organizer

Mark Wilson 
Organizer
Temple Cloud, South West England, United Kingdom
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