A big thank you to Ellie
Ellie has been the person whose energy has sustained Grow Chichester, her vision of growing spaces in Chichester has indeed grown and become strong. Just looking at the number of spaces where it's possible to grow fruit, veg and plants that encourage bees locally and you'll see her green fingers in it. She's found funding to secure workers to be on site to lead sessions, she's led sessions herself. And she's inspired more things to happen as an outflow from this, like the Whyke Community Orchard in South Chichester run by local fruit enthusiasts.
The apples growing in both Oaklands Park and in Whyke Community Orchard are there because she made contact with a grower of Sussex apple varieties. At Oaklands she then asked for volunteers to plant them, tend and water them and later prune them. And you know what, the first big crop might well be this autumn at Oaklands Park if the amount of apple blossom is any indication.
As for the Bishops Palace Garden, the allure of the potting shed meant that Ellie was found there at least one day a week last year, not to mention the newly acquired greenhouse, or the fruitcage, or in planning, building and filling the big raised beds that you don't need to bend down to tend.
Photograph of Ellie, and Mike from Woodhorn, standing in front of a heap of compost from Woodhorn destined for the raised beds.
Ellie is now concentrating on new things and leaves a big hole in Transition Chichester.
Although Ellie will be much missed, thanks to various folk stepping up, the gardens and orchards will carry on growing from strength to strength. Thank you Ellie, from Jenny Cole