Gardeners sitting pretty on benches

Jeannie Kielty from the Banks Group with two members of the Ellington Allotment Association sitting on one of the new benches.

Jeannie Kielty from the Banks Group with two members of the Ellington Allotment Association sitting on one of the new benches.

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Green-fingered users of a Northumberland community allotment project will be able to sit back and enjoy their work more easily thanks to a grant.

The Ellington Allotment Association manages a site off Lynemouth Road in the village that contains 40 plots, all of which are used by local residents to grow a range of fruit, vegetables and flowers.

The allotments were opened last year after the completion of work by a dedicated group of volunteers to transform a piece of land formally owned by Rio Tinto and gifted to the Allotment Association by Ellington Parish Council into its present form.

And now gardeners, local residents and passers by will be able to sit and enjoy the scene after a £750 grant from the Banks Group’s Community Fund, paid for the purchase of three high quality wooden benches that have been placed around the site.

Ellington Allotment Association was recently named as runner up in the Best Urban Project category of the 2015 LOVE Northumberland Awards, which aim to celebrate the very best in community and voluntary environmental work across the county.

Susan Clark, secretary and treasurer at Ellington Allotment Association, said: “A huge amount of work went into getting the land for the allotments and then making it fit for purpose, but the outcome has already made it more than worthwhile.

“We’re very grateful to the Banks Group for their support and know they will be very well used.”

Jeannie Kielty, development relations coordinator at The Banks Group, says: “This is a fantastic project that’s come a huge distance in a very short time, and makes a great contribution towards building real community spirit across the village, so we’re very pleased to have the opportunity to contribute to its continuing development.”

The Banks Community Fund provides grants for community groups and voluntary organisations in the vicinity of both operational and proposed Banks Group projects. Anyone interested in applying for funding should contact James Eaglesham at the Banks Community Fund on 0191 378 6342.