New urban orchard and community garden takes shape


  • Part of an underused Grimsby car park is undergoing a transformation into a community garden
  • Community gardeners will grow fruit, root vegetables, salads, soft fruits and herbs
  • Fresh produce from the community garden will help supply local food banks and a training kitchen
  • Volunteers and supplies needed to help prepare and plant the garden

A new community garden in Grimsby’s East Marsh is taking shape in a section of the Garibaldi Street car park.

Sited opposite the magnificent Great Wall of Grimsby mural, the new garden is part of a grassroots approach to growing fresh produce in the face of rising food prices.

Community food co-ordinator Mary Vickers is working with volunteers, community groups and North East Lincolnshire Council to set up and manage the new garden and communal green space.

Contractors BCJ Construction carried out much of the construction work to transform underused car parking spaces into a series of raised beds, planting areas and pathways.

North East Lincolnshire Council’s grounds maintenance team has planted 35 fruit trees in the new garden. 

As well as fruit trees, the community garden team plan on planting bushes for soft fruits, potatoes, carrots, salad, herbs and brassicas, such as cauliflower and cabbage.  Some potatoes and salads are already in!

Encouraging people to grow, prepare and cook their own food is one of the main drivers behind the project.

At only 2.8 per cent, tree canopy cover is sparse in the East Marsh ward. The new orchard and nearby planting in Albion Street, along with recent community-led tree planting initiatives in Grant Thorold Park, will help bring more, much-needed trees into the area.

Funding for the new garden and tree planting came from the Government’s Levelling Up Parks Fund to create a new green space.

The Salvation Army building, opposite the car park, has a new community training kitchen where they teach people cooking skills.

Food grown in the community garden will provide a steady supply of produce for the kitchen as well as local food banks.

This will give people the opportunity to plant, grow, pick, and cook their own food, all within a few metres of the garden.

Those behind the project are also keen to be as environmentally friendly as possible, and have started this by taking advice about harvesting rainwater for the garden.

Comments from groups and individuals are coming in saying that the garden has already improved the area.

Community groups around the Garibaldi Street car park agree that growing fruit, vegetables and salad will increase the accessibility of affordable, healthy, fresh produce while providing a valuable opportunity for communities to become more informed about nutrition. Establishing an urban garden in an underused carpark represents an innovative way of cultivating crops helping to secure community access to fresh and healthy food, reducing food’s carbon footprint, and creating a healthier social environment. 

How you can help

The team behind this project are appealing for volunteers to help prepare and plant the garden.

They also currently need: another large water tank, smaller water butts, hosepipes, and other tools.

If you can help, and want further information about the project, please contact:

Mary Vickers – Community Food Co-ordinator in North East Lincolnshire – [email protected] – 07736 939171

Alison Gardner – Corps leader at Grimsby Salvation Army – [email protected].uk – 07407 145110