Ashtons Green Community Allotment is a wonderful place and group of people. Any preconceptions people may have about what an allotment is, get blown out the water by these guys. It’s way more than just a place where flowers and vegetables grow, it’s a place where people grow too.
They work with a number of organisations, including the Change Grow Live St Helens (CGL St Helens) group, which helps people recover from addictions such as alcohol and drugs. They help to recycle pallets into garden furniture, organise Cooking in the Community and Sow, Grow and Eat programmes with local groups with great success and provide a Friday night drop in for elderly residents.
We had heard that they had entered a national competition run by Stoves.co.uk where new kitchen appliances are up for grabs as the prize. The allotment association were in desperate need of some new appliances which broke. Their community work relies upon them.
Realising how badly they needed to win this competition, and what a wonderful organisation they are, St Helens Unlimited decided to get involved. We ran a month-long online campaign to promote the allotment and their competition entry, encouraging people to donate a vote and help them win.
We were delighted to hear that they secured 3rd place in the national competition and will receive £2,000, which will allow them to replace the electric oven which broke last year after a local Halloween party, meaning it can continue its programmes which have proved very popular with schools as well.
Paul Llewellyn, Treasurer of Ashtons Green Community Allotments, said: “What a great feeling it is to improve someone’s life and just to help them fit in and feel part of something and that is what our organisation is all about.
“We have a group that attends our allotments called St Helens Autism and Asperger’s Society that participates in a program called Sow, Grow Eat and the appliances from Stoves will really benefit this programme and help us to continue helping people. We can’t thank the voters enough.”
Paul added “I’d like to say a big thank you to Mike Ashworth and St Helens Unlimited, from all of us here at the allotments, we could not of have done it without you.”