Meet the Mini Snowman!

I ventured out into the snowy wilds of west London this afternoon. It was icy cold and the biting wind made it feel even colder, but as I left my building I was amused to spot this adorable little fella guarding the front door. I suspect he was built by my lovely next-door-neighbours, who have an energetic toddler – he’s just the perfect size for a little one to have made!

Keep warm and safe out there, dear readers. And if you build a snowman, send me a snap! In weather like this, it’s important to keep an eye on your friends, neighbours and family too, especially anyone who is elderly, vulnerable, or in poor health. Sometimes even something as simple as an extra pair of fluffy socks or a hot flask of tea can make all the difference…

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Happy 1st Birthday Rochester Square Gardens!

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I was invited by friends to visit Rochester Square Gardens in Camden, north London yesterday as this community garden project was celebrating its first birthday. Tucked away in a small, quiet square only five minutes walk from Camden Road station, this lovely space was once a plant nursery. Its current caretakers have transformed what had been a derelict site into a place where both plants and people grow sustainably. On their Facebook page (see below), they explain their ethos and invite people to get involved:

We currently facilitate workshops and events promoting environmental awareness and action, Art/Crafts/Music/Film/Photography and Movement. The space welcomes you to tune in with the rhythms of collective awakening, evolution and harmony on our planet.

If you have ideas for the space or would like to run a workshop / presentation / event, get in touch and be a part of the garden! :)

I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to this peaceful urban oasis and recommend you pop by if you’re in the area! If you’d like a taster of the place, you can see some of the photographs I took during my visit in the slideshow above…

If you’d like to learn more about the Rochester Square Gardens project, check out their website or their Facebook page.

Signs of Spring at Syon Lane

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It may still be distinctly chilly in London, but there are already signs of spring in the air. And this means that Syon Lane Community Allotment is beginning to come out of its winter hibernation at last. If you look very closely, you can see new growth appearing everywhere as the cycle of the seasons repeats…

Interested in what we’re doing at the allotment? You’re in luck. Spring also means that the Syon Lane Sunday open days are back each week from 12pm. All are welcome!

For details on how to get to us, see the website here – and you can join in the discussion on Facebook and Twitter too.

You can find more of my photographs from Syon Lane here.

Good news from Syon Lane!

Syon Lane Community Allotment entrance (Photo: Claire Butler, 26/02/12)

I’m very pleased to report that, after much diplomatic negotiation, the volunteers at Syon Lane Community Allotment have been granted another year on the site – it seems that after a lot of hard work on the part of the volunteers over the last couple of years (including winning an award and being featured in the local paper!), the owner of the land was impressed with what has been achieved and was therefore happy to extend their time there.

And I’m looking forward to getting back down there with my camera…

If you’d like to know more, or are interested in getting involved, please visit the Syon Lane website or contact the team on Twitter.

A hoot of an afternoon (sorry…)

Meet Sonny (above) and Tallulah (below), possibly the most chilled out Barn Owls in the world. I met them this afternoon at the Grow Heathrow open day in Sipson – they’d been brought along by a local owl rescue centre (which, I have to admit, I didn’t even know existed until today!) to meet everyone.

Continue reading “A hoot of an afternoon (sorry…)”

Summer at Syon Lane

Last weekend saw me at Syon Lane Community Allotment again. Naturally, I brought my camera along, and managed to get some great pictures of the site coming into its summer colours – and beautiful they are too… (click on any of the images above to see a larger version).

If you’d like to visit, there is an open day every Sunday from 12pm and all are welcome. For details of how to get to the Allotment, see the map and travel info on the Syon Lane website here.

For regular updates on what the Allotment volunteers get up to (and some lively discussion), join the Syon Lane Community Allotment Facebook group, or follow @SyonLane on Twitter.

You can find more of my photos from Syon Lane here.

Big Dig Open Day at Syon Lane Community Allotment

Despite the pouring rain putting off a few visitors and volunteers, the Syon Lane Community Allotment Big Dig Open Day turned out to be a fun and productive afternoon. You can see some of the things we got up to (including making hundreds of seed-balls, filling up the greenhouse with lots of newly-planted seeds in pots, and getting our bathtub wormery up and running!) in the photos above.

We were also visited by a photographer from the local paper, and you can see some of his photos here.

Thanks to everyone who came down and made it such an enjoyable day!

For further information on Syon Lane Community Allotment, visit their website, and join the Facebook group for more updates.

You can also see what Syon Lane looks like at different times of the year by checking out some of my photos here, here and here.