YOUNG volunteers have been digging in to transform a patch of wasteland into a community garden.
Twelve members of Hartlepool’s Prince’s Trust Team spent two weeks planting bedding plants, shrubs and bulbs on land at the rear of Burbank Street, in Hartlepool.
The group teamed up with community worker Clive Hall and local residents, who donated bulbs and gave them gardening advice.
The scheme is part of a 12-week Prince’s Trust course which leads to a recognised qualification which is a certificate in employability, teamwork and community skills.
The young people involved are all aged 16 to 25 and are enrolled with the Prince’s Trust through Stockton Riverside College.
They transformed a 200ft-long patch of land which stands on the site of a derelict terraced street which was levelled down and grassed over with benches installed.
Prince’s Trust team leader Terry Shaw described the venture as a “community backstreet garden” and said the group had worked well on the project.
The group painted over graffiti on back yard walls and prepared boards for future work by Cleveland College of Art and Design students.
The Prince’s Trust students raised £150 for materials by holding various events including an ongoing raffle, which will be drawn in April, when their course ends, as well as a sponsored seat clean at Hartlepool United’s ground.
Mr Shaw said: “They have done really well.
“The residents have all been pleased with the input.
“I haven’t had a bad word come back about the project from the residents and you can really see the difference the students have made to the garden.”
He added: “The course has helped them develop a lot of community awareness and they learned a lot about communication skills. “They also learned about funding and getting in touch with different organisations to see if they can find people willing to donate bits and pieces for the project.”
The next Prince’s Trust course starts on May 7 and anyone wanting further information can call Terry on 07553367543 or email terry.shaw@Stockton.ac.uk
Any other small community projects wanting a hand from Prince’s Trust volunteers can also contact Terry.