Grant boost for Green

A COMMUNITY grant scheme has given a major boost to help create a Centenary Green in Wisbech.

WREN has awarded a grant of £35,350 towards the Centenary Green Appeal, run by the Octavia Hill Birthplace Museum Trust, who need the funds to complete the project.

The £80,000 appeal was launched in July. The Birthplace Trust aims to transform the historically significant, but derelict, plot in Somers Road into a landscaped garden for the local community to enjoy.

Adjacent to Octavia Hill’s Birthplace House, the garden will be called Centenary Green, commemorating the centenary of the death of Octavia Hill, whose achievements as an environmental campaigner led to her co-founding the National Trust. The National Trust and Fenland District Council are backing the project.

WREN is a not-for-profit business that awards grants for community, conservation and heritage projects, with the aim of enhancing the local environment, natural conservation and heritage.

Sarah Gosling, WREN Grant Manager said, “We are delighted to support Centenary Green. Octavia Hill dedicated her life to conserving open spaces for the benefit of future generations, which is the ethos of the Landfill Communities Fund scheme, under which we give funding.”

David Crouch, Project Manager for the Octavia Hill Birthplace Museum Trust, said: “We are extremely grateful to WREN for their generous award. This gives us a major boost in reaching our target, although we still have a way to go.”

The Birthplace Trust still needs support from funding organisations, local businesses and individuals, to transform the wasteland into a landscaped public garden of lawns, a paved terrace, planting and seating, protected by steel railings. The appeal target includes labour costs, so if any volunteers are able to give their time as a gift to create the garden, this will contribute to the appeal.

Fundraising events are promoted on www.octaviahill.org. If you can assist the community effort to create Centenary Green or would like to make a donation, please contact the Trust on 01945 476358.