Friday, February 08, 2013

Market Drayton IS IncrEdible!

Pam Warhurst, Emma Walton,
Tricia Pedlar, Charlotte Hollins
On Monday night the Festival Drayton Centre, in Market Drayton, was alive with enthusiasm and excitement. There were over 60 people gathered in the green room to listen to inspirational speaker Pam Warhurst. Pam came down from Todmorden in West Yorkshire, where she and other community members have formed an amazing project called Incredible Edible Todmorden. The idea behind this is to encourage and educate people to use and grow local produce and suppliers. They have transformed the look of their small town by growing fruit and vegetables in planters, on grass verges and in any available green spaces they could find! It has also had an amazing impact on the town’s tourism, with busloads of people arriving to follow the ‘Green Route’.

Incredible Edible Todmorden link HERE

The Incredible Edible theme has spread and there are now 35 Incredible Edible towns around the country as well as some abroad.
The Market Drayton Community Partnership’s (MDCP) environment & climate change group (which is made up of local volunteers including Emma and Charlotte!) linked up with the Fordhall Community Land Initiative and Making Local Food Work to facilitate and co-ordinate Monday evening.  

There was so much support and enthusiasm in the room to develop an IncrEdible Market Drayton concept further. Suggestions were made that the space outside the library might be a possible place to grow edible plants, that ‘Shropshire Prune’ damson trees be planted around the town, that an audit of fruit trees be done so that the fruit does not go to waste, but is utilised to make jams etc. How about bees on top of flat roves in the town centre to pollinate plants? That was another suggestion. The list is vast.……..a gingerbread shaped garden, garden shares where people who don’t have garden space can help those who cannot manage their own gardens anymore.

What was really brilliant too was that there was a diverse group of people there on the night: local councillors, Shropshire Council representatives, the mayor, local residents, the prison, the allotment group, Fordhall (of course), Meres and Mosses Housing Association and on and on the list could go…………………

We were all very excited about the enthusiasm in the room - so much so we couldn't sleep for the next few days!!

There will be a second meeting in about a month’s time, so if you are interested in getting involved then please give me (Emma) a call at Fordhall (01630 638 696) where I am now the Community garden Co-ordinator or email me on

Our first planting opportunity is happening this weekend. We will be meeting at 2pm in the car park at Walkmill Meadows in Market Drayton. We have been given 6 Shropshire damson trees to plant on the site. Obviously 6 trees will not take a long time to plant, so we will probably do a general tidy and litter pick while we’re on site. Hopefully see you there.

Community Garden Co-ordinator

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