Three Gardens for Bradwell Abbey
Coming Spring 2019

Organisations Inter-Action MK and the Milton Keynes City Discovery Centre, which are both based at the abbey, will be working together to create a Sensory Garden, a Children’s Garden and a Productive Garden in the grounds of the abbey. The project will bring the Milton Keynes community together through involving Carers, adults with learning difficulties, bereaved people and people with mental health issues, as well as local community organisations and individuals who live and work locally.

The Sensory Garden will allow visitors to enjoy a wide variety of sensory experiences. It will be designed planted and maintained by, amongst other people in the local community, people who are recently bereaved. This will help to improve mental wellbeing, giving those people the chance to enjoy fresh air and meet new people in a beautiful, historic environment.

The Productive Garden will become a community hub for producing local, fresh produce. Food grown in the Productive Garden will also be donated to local foodbanks and a community café enterprise in Milton Keynes. People who are unemployed and/or have mental health problems will be invited to design and plant the garden, and will also act as mentors for younger people on a supported apprenticeships in the garden, creating a mutually beneficial relationship helping those involved to build skills, gain confidence and socialise with new people.

Finally, the Children’s Garden will provide a space for young people to play in a safe environment whilst learning to enjoy nature. Local young people and young carers will be invited to design, plant and maintain the garden. Each Garden will have a Club, run by the members who helped to create it. The Club will hold events, Big Gardening Days and creative events.

The Gardens will also be a springboard for creative trails, exhibitions and new public art commissions.

Funding: The projects are supported by £10k of National Lottery funding from the Big Lottery Fund, £5k from Santander, £2k from MKC and contributions from MK Rotary, the One Family Foundation and the N Bucks Arts Society.