Vege patch feeds community

17:00, Jul 01 2014
Rollerston gardens
NEIGHBOURLY SUPPORT: Local residents are thrilled Rollerson Park has been turned into a community garden thanks to the help of the Papakura east neighbourhood policing team, Auckland Council and Bunnings Warehouse. From left, Paula Ng, Aaliyah Gerrard, Isabel Gerrard, Carlos Gerrard, Jonathan Gerrard, Christine Barton and Grahame Healey.

Hundreds of volunteers picked up paintbrushes, spades and pitchforks to help transform a disused park into a vibrant community garden.

Volunteers from Bunnings Warehouse, police, Auckland Council, Mormon Helping Hands and residents all helped to clear rubbish, lay garden beds, plant trees and paint fences at Rollerson Park.

Bunnings chose the Rollerson Park project as one of four community led initiatives to give resources and manpower to.

Rollerson gardens
COMMUNITY SPIRIT: Sergeant Jonathon Chappell, resident Grahame Pealey and local board member Brent Catchpole support the use of Rollerson Park as a community garden where locals can engage with each other while growing fresh fruit and veges.

Sergeant Jonathon Chappell from the Papakura East neighbourhood policing team says the aim of the project is to turn the unused park into a garden full of crops that will be tended to and maintained by the locals.

He says the park has been disused for a long time and the community has been very supportive about the idea of turning it into a garden.

Local resident Grahame Pealey is passionate about the Papakura community and is overjoyed with the transformation.

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Rollerson park
HEALTHY SPOT: Residents living around Rollerson Park now have a new garden in which they can socialise and grow their own crops.

"The park was under-utilised. This gives the people of Papakura something to cherish and something to look forward to. Otherwise it's just going to waste."

Papakura Local Board member Brent Catchpole says it was a good opportunity to provide a great community facility.

A similar project on Redcrest Ave was a big success and continues to keep away troublesome behaviour and graffiti because there is always someone attending the garden there, he says.

"The whole area has just lifted."

Papakura Courier