Open Day 2014
Penge residents enjoy a Grand Day Out at Winsford Gardens
20 June 2014: Over 180 locals turned out for Penge Green Gym’s annual Open Day on Saturday 14 June, where old and young took part in activities ranging from making bird boxes and insect hotels, to tai chi sessions run by local trainer Nik Trigkatzis.
Throughout the day, the volunteers of Penge Green Gym sold plants grown at Winsford Gardens, and supplied refreshments and home-made cakes, whilst local ensemble, Musica Medioca serenaded visitors.
The event was organised by the dedicated volunteers of Penge Green Gym, who meet each Wednesday at the gardens with the aim of creating a better environment for the local community and wildlife – whilst improving their own physical and mental well-being.
Leading up to the Open Day, the volunteers had been giving a make-over to the garden’s main entrance off the Croydon Road with shrubs and perennials purchased with monies from the Metropolitan Public Gardens Association. On the day, volunteers completed planting-up a disused pond area with water-loving plants, funded by a Capital Clean-up grant.
Over the past three years Winsford Gardens – a once neglected local park – has been brought back to life with rose beds, wildflower meadows, hedgerows and herb gardens, and is now viewed by locals as a hidden oasis, providing a tranquil and calming environment in which to unwind, listening to bird song rather than the roar of the traffic along the Croydon Road.
Penge resident Brenda Little, who chairs the Penge Green Gym Community Group said; “It was really lovely seeing so many people coming in to the gardens on the open day and enjoying such a peaceful and colourful natural environment. All the children seemed to have a great time doing the treasure hunt, making and painting bird boxes, making bird feeders, filling-up the insect hotel, and making bags and photo frames from re-cycled materials. We make a bit of money from the day which is all put back in to improving the gardens – but the main aim is to encourage more local people to come and spend time in this open air space”.