Bethnal Green Appeal

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Bethnal Green Appeal

The Friends Group By The Friends Group

The Friends Group want to get more voices heard on the matter of the environment – we're looking for support to improve, enhance and maintain the green spaces and conservation areas of Bethnal Green

Tower Hamlets Idea stage

This project is preparing for fundraising. Click Like to show your support, or Follow for updates on this project's journey.

Parks and gardens of Tower Hamlets are in need of tender loving care. An understanding has been reached to work with the council to achieve the aims and objectives of the community.

The Friends Group in partnership with the East London Garden Society plan to rejuvenate the public spaces of Bethnal Green – promoting gardening skills in the borough, improving air quality and better connecting people with nature, wildlife and the historical context of the neighbourhood.

We want to channel the rich diversity of the East End to breathe new life into the city. Much art is conceived and produced in Bethnal Green from Shoreditch to Victoria Park. Therefore, to celebrate Bethnal Green we wish to start a cultural festival promoting the locality to the wider world.

Blithehale meaning 'happy corner' is the earliest place-name for Bethnal Green – we must raise enough funds to make it a happy corner once again :) – to do this we need your help and support.

What we'll deliver:

  • Carry out an area survey to establish boundaries, feasibility and costs
  • Plan and implement better planting schemes for the Bethnal Green area
  • Use wildlife friendly planting to encourage biodiversity
  • Mask traffic noise and mitigate air pollution with multi stemmed specimens, ferns and mixed native hedging
  • Add colour and scent to local gardens with flowering shrubs
  • Establish better recognition of the local conservation areas
  • Review street furniture and people flow
  • Look after the memorial gardens of ‘The Stairway to Heaven’
  • Start a festival for Bethnal Green to celebrate and promote the area
  • Start an urban gardening school to teach gardening skills and foster community relations

Why it's a great idea:

It was found from talking to people that there was great interest in having an enhanced and improved area, especially in the conservation areas of Bethnal Green Gardens and Columbia Road. It was therefore decided we should all work together to make our voices heard on the matter of the environment.

The Friends Group (consisting of ‘The Friends of Bethnal Green Gardens’ and ‘The Friends of Columbia Road) has been constituted to put ideas into action. The aim is to improve, maintain and enhance the gardens of Bethnal Green which include listed buildings such as the Bethnal Green Library.

Levels of air pollution in London are high and public health is suffering as a consequence. The Friends Group want to work towards a pollution free city; creating high-quality green spaces for everyone to enjoy – convivial spaces, where the air is clean to breathe, where wildlife can prosper and children can play.

Steps to get it done:

  • Work with residents, designers and the council to achieve community objectives
  • Ensure there is a head gardener who has oversight of what needs to be done
  • Ensure there is a project administrator to oversee the works
  • Engage the community – residents, businesses, schools, commuters, visitors
  • Promote Bethnal Green and its historical context to the wider world
  • Share project updates via social media platforms
  • Develop a network of volunteers and contributors
  • Experiment with community events and workshops to build support and generate ideas
  • Bring gardeners together to exchange knowledge and skills
  • Continue fundraising to deliver projects as ideas progress and develop

Bethnal Green is an historic area going back to the middle ages from the times of ‘The Blind Beggar’ to ‘Mother Kelly's Doorstep’, a popular music hall song.

The ‘Blind Beggar of Bethnal Green’ was a Tudor ballad and tells the story of a poor man who gave a generous dowry for his daughter’s wedding. In one version of the legend which was published in 1765, the beggar was said to be Henry, the eldest son of Simon de Montfort, and was a soldier in the service of the king. According to the legend, he fell at the Battle of Evesham in 1265 and was found wandering blind by a nobleman’s daughter. She nursed the wounded soldier back to health, they fell in love and were married. His identity was revealed at the wedding feast of his daughter Bessie.

The borough seal depicts a scene based on ‘The Beggar’s Daughter of Bednall Green’, a poem in Percy’s ‘Reliques of Ancient English Poetry’ which was published in 1765 but probably dates from the period of Elizabeth I.

Location Tower Hamlets

Tower Hamlets has 117 other projects and £1,025,000 in potential grant funding

About the space

Bethnal Green is an area in the Borough of Tower Hamlets

Council

Tower Hamlets Council

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How will the money be spent?Total £55,332

Planting and landscaping - £14,000 (25%)
Project administration and site management - £12,000 (22%)
Bethnal Green survey and mapping of the area - £8,000 (14%)
Planning and design consultancy - £5,000 (9%)
Starting a festival for Bethnal Green - £5,000 (9%)
Printing and promotional materials - £2,500 (5%)
Community garden school facilities - £2,500 (5%)
Events and workshops - £1,000 (2%)
Other - £5,332 (10%)

Costs Breakdown

This shows how money raised for the project will be spent. Before entering fundraising these costs will be confirmed by the project's Delivery Manager and verified by the verifier.

25%
Planting and landscaping
£14,000
22%
Project administration and site management
£12,000
14%
Bethnal Green survey and mapping of the area
£8,000
9%
Planning and design consultancy
£5,000
9%
Starting a festival for Bethnal Green
£5,000
5%
Printing and promotional materials
£2,500
5%
Community garden school facilities
£2,500
2%
Events and workshops
£1,000
10%
Other
£5,332
  • Spacehive fees
    £2,500
  • Transaction Fees
    £2,332
  • VAT
    £500

Total £55,332

Our Wish List

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