Portishead garden protected from development

Portishead in Bloom volunteers at the community garden

Portishead in Bloom volunteers at the community garden. - Credit: Portishead in Bloom

The future of a community garden in Portishead has been safeguarded until at least 2025. 

The Potager Garden, located in Station Road close to Portishead Library, has been listed as an Asset of Community Value (ACV) after a successful joint application by Portishead Town Council and Portishead in Bloom. 

Volunteers from Portishead in Bloom first adopted the land, which was once earmarked for a ship-shaped library with flats above it, in 2014. However, until now, it had only been given short-term assurances of use of the land.  

As well as flowers, the voluntary group has installed raised beds and planted herbs and vegetables in the beds for community use. 

An ACV is land or property of importance to a local community which is subject to additional protection from development under the Localism Act 2011. 

The largest group of listings have been for pubs, with 600 listed by March 2015, and other listings including allotments, socials clubs, village halls and nightclubs across the country.  

After launching a survey in September to support the application, more than 250 responses were collected from the town’s residents. The survey results showed overwhelming support for the garden, with 99 per cent of respondents in favour of the listing.  

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Responses to the survey also noted the mental health benefits of the garden, the new skills the garden maintenance encourages and the community it fosters. 

Portishead in Bloom vice-chairman, Jane Pagano, said: “Portishead in Bloom is very pleased that the town garden has been recognised as an Asset of Community Value, and it is much appreciated by the local community.  

“Next year, we plan to create another raised bed and hopefully provide more seating.” 

The garden’s listing as an Asset of Community Value will last until 2025, after which it will have to be re-listed. 

This year, Portishead in Bloom hopes to hold its Open Gardens Weekend on June 12-13, which is subject to restrictions surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic.  

The event is the biggest fundraiser of the year for Portishead in Bloom and proceeds help the group maintain and improve many areas of the town. 

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