THE community of Bemerton Heath are sowing the seeds to create a new garden in the heart of the estate.

Volunteers rolled up their sleeves last week armed with spades and trowels to start work on the new community garden in Gainsborough Close.

The garden project has been made possible thanks to the efforts of Ioni Drewitt and Tilly Bell, aged 12, who helped secure £5,000 worth of funding from the Burns Price Foundation.

Tilly said: "It is exciting to see it come together. We are not just building it for us but for everyone else."

The pair attend youth charity Rise:61’s Life Group, an after school club run on Monday nights. As part of the club the young people get involved in projects that make the community a better place to live.

The whole group have helped with ideas for the garden but Tilly and Ioni played leading roles in making applications.

The building of the community garden will be taking place over the summer.

The project is part of the wider regeneration of the area around the Multi Use Games Area (MUGA) on Gainsborough Close which was inspired by the friends of Ben Giorgi who died two years ago.

It is being led by Rise:61 with help from Wiltshire Council’s Resident Engagement Team and is being developed and delivered by Gary Lamont and his team from Forager’s Farm’s, a social enterprise that has experience of creating community gardens all over the region.

The aim of the garden is to provide an outside space for residents. Those in the nearby flats currrently have no access to a garden space.

The garden will have a sensory element to it as well as a space to have barbecues and neighbourly get togethers.

Robin Imeson, of Rise:61, said: "We are really proud of the young people taking the lead in making the community an even better place to live. The garden is going to really improve the look and feel of the area.

"The garden will be a great place for residents to get to know each other."

Anyone in Bemerton Heath is welcome to get involved in the creation of the community garden. For more information contact robin by emailing