Orchard planted on East End housing estate

EAST Enders have led the way in planting the first orchard on a Tower Hamlets Homes estate.

Volunteer residents and staff planted greengage and plum trees in community garden Rocky Park in Bethnal Green which was one of the Mayor of London’s ‘Capital Growth’ winners last year.

The 30 trees on the Teesdale and Hollybush estate are part of a Tower Hamlets Homes-wide project to get orchards and trees on more estates in the borough. Neighbours are helping to identify disused areas on estates for trees and once the orchards are planted resident groups will take responsibility for caring for the trees.

Several other sites are currently being assessed for this innovative project by Tower Hamlets Homes; the trees need to be planted between January and March to make sure they grow well.

Residents who get involved in the orchards receive free horticulture training and get the first chance to pick the fruit. Sarah Beydoun said: “These environmental projects are a wonderful way for our residents to get together and really make a difference to their social lives and environmental surroundings and benefit the lives of all those who use it.

“We are keen to have the tree’s fruit so we can start the host of exciting activities and projects this orchard will produce.”