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Garden group gets £80k to help bring down carbon footprint

Garden group gets £80k to help bring down carbon footprint

The Scottish Government has awarded Tayport Community Trust's growing space initiative £78,453 in funds.

Hailed by the group's leaders as "really great for Tayport", the funds will go towards establishing a community garden in the area to grow vegetables, salads and fruit.

The community group hopes to establish the garden so Tayport residents can grow more produce, learn about the links between food and climate change, and reduce carbon emissions on food miles and travel.

The project aims to become self-sustainable by one day selling surplus produce locally.

Awarded through the government's Climate Challenge Fund, the money will fund the project for a year, starting in April, subject to planning permission being approved.

  (Tayport Community Trust)
via STV via STV

PLANT (People Learning About Nature in Tayport) is the Tayport Community Trust's gardening group and they will be responsible for taking the project forward. Its primary goal is 'bringing people together to help make Tayport a beautiful, productive environment.'

The garden itself will be a mixture of allotments and shared plots. It will act as a knowledge hub for developing and sharing skills through workshops and social events aimed at the whole Tayport community. It is hoped that the garden will be 'as open as possible to everyone.'

  (Tayport Community Trust)
via STV via STV

"The funds will be really great for us and they're intended to develop a community garden space which will be a mix of allotments and shared grounds," said Jessie Roberts, a trustee of the PLANT group.

"We've done a lot of consultation and we've had lots of interest from other groups. The plan is to run a series of workshops for people who want to share gardening skills or who want to learn - basically get together and learn how to garden, while reducing our carbon footprint.

"We have planted a fruit tree walk with a lot of help from local children and adults. We have also set up a small produce garden to supply Tayport's Harbour Community Cafe."

  (Tayport Community Trust)
via STV via STV

Jessie added that the funds were subject to a number of terms and that PLANT would continue to liaise with the local community.

"I should emphasise that there are conditions to the award, including planning permission," she said.

"We have already consulted many local people, but further public consultation is taking place. People will have the chance to influence the plans.

"Hopefully, if we get successful we would sell produce to local people who want to buy fresh, local food. That’s one of the things that we’d be looking to do in the future."

Fife Council's Allotments Officer Peter Duncan will be holding consultation sessions about the plans on Thursday, February 12, at 2pm and 6pm. They will take place in the old Council offices at Tayport Library.

Daniel Rous

The grant is part of the Scottish Government’s Climate Challenge Fund, which announced £2.86m in funds for 33 projects across the country on Monday.

The Climate Challenge Fund was launched in 2008 to support projects which aim to reduce carbon consumption across Scotland, and to encourage communities to take action on climate change in order for Scots to lead sustainable and low carbon lifestyles.

Since its launch, over £61m has been awarded to 696 projects in 512 communities across Scotland and the latest announcement is the 20th round of grants to be delivered from the fund.

For more information on the Tayport Community Trust's gardening group PLANT go online. Or maybe you'd rather become volunteer? They're always looking for more.

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