Volunteers of Grape LaneA community environmental taskforce has been enjoying the ‘fruits of their labour’ by improving a residential garden area in Durham City.

Durham County Council joined forces with Durham City Homes, County Durham Housing Group and residents of Grape Lane gardening last week (Monday 20 June), to help improve an open space at the top of the estate, which is located a stone’s throw from the city centre.

Volunteers and the council’s Civic Pride and Clean and Green teams came together in this community project, funded by Durham County Council and Durham City Homes, by planting flowers and improving borders around grassed areas within the communal garden zones.

The project has improved the appearance of the area and has encouraged the community to work together. This has supported the group’s entry into the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) ‘Its Your Neighbourhood’ scheme.

In addition, the scheme will also play its part in trying to help Durham City bid to become ‘Champion of Champions’ in the regional RHS Northumbria in Bloom and national RHS Britain in Bloom competitions

Dean Henry, a civic pride officer for Durham County Council said: “The planting scheme has been a huge success, bringing lots of partners together to improve the appearance of this area.

“The group will now enter the RHS ‘Its Your Neighbourhood’ competition and all residents and partners should be proud that their efforts will also contribute to Durham City’s bid in the Champion of Champions category for both In Bloom competitions.”

Cllr Brian Stephens, Cabinet member for neighbourhoods and local partnerships said: “We’d like to thank everyone who took part, especially the residents who will continue to maintain the floral borders and flower beds in future.

“It’s now fingers and trowels crossed for a blooming great result in all three competitions.”