Volunteers give Harlow Town Park a lift

Communities / Mon 27th Feb 2017 at 12:27pm


A team of 16 volunteers have boosted their prospects and improved a local green space by joining a course in Harlow Town Park.

Over the last three and a half months, two groups of dedicated volunteers have taken part in Green Skills, an employment training course run by community charity Groundwork Essex. As well as giving the walled garden in the park a lift – clearing back wild undergrowth, building new raised beds and making the surfacing more even and accessible – they have boosted their own job prospects by learning skills and gaining qualifications.

On Tuesday 21 February, the volunteers were joined at the park’s new learning centre by guests from Harlow Council, Harlow Jobcentre Plus and local schools to mark their achievements. Steve Harvey, Executive Director of Groundwork Essex, Mike Levett, Education and Volunteer Officer for Harlow Council, and Matt Sutcliffe, Employment Project Tutor for Groundwork Essex, all made speeches praising the volunteers’ work and the wider park developments. The volunteers then gave the guests a tour of the physical improvements they have made.

Matt Sutcliffe said: “It was great to see so many guests at the event – the volunteers have worked really hard in the walled garden, making changes that mean it’s a pleasure for others to use. It was brilliant to share this with others and also acknowledge the steps the volunteers have taken towards getting back into work.”

The Green Skills courses are the latest in a series of projects that Groundwork has run in Harlow Town Park – others include Wellies in the Woods, a series of outdoor activities for the whole family, and an education pack for schools to use when visiting the park.

These projects, and the interest that has been shown in them, prove how valuable the town park is to Harlow – a great way to celebrate its sixtieth year.

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