From overgrown to overused! Meet the residents making the most of every inch of green space in their community

Date: 16/06/2023

One of our latest communities is a 100-home estate in Meir. We took ownership of the homes which were a mix of houses and bungalows last year and residents Bryan and Ken were part of the new community.

This month we visited their revamped greenspace called ‘Nutty Nook’ that was created by the pair using little money, and just their time and donations from the community.

Bryan said the space came about when his old landlord had let the patch of green space behind their street become overgrown and out of control. 

“During lockdown I was getting sick of looking out my window and seeing the mess," said Bryan.

“We’re a proud community here and we love our homes and garden. The mess was becoming unbearable and with nothing to do, I decided to act and tackle the wasteland myself.

“At the beginning it was a chore, but it became something to keep my mind preoccupied and helped my mental health during a tough time.

“My neighbour Ken later saw what I was doing and offered to help. The community were great too, and donated things for the space. Then over time we’ve just been maintaining the space and adding things every now and then.”

The community has lots of Grandchildren that visit, they've helped to create the space, name it, and even introduced a community of fairies and gnomes!

“My granddaughter visits me often,” said Bryan.

“She helped me to name the space ‘Nutty Nook’ and asked if we could put gnomes and fairies into the space.

“I rallied round, and the community were great, they donated lots of gnomes, we found pots on Facebook Marketplace to create flowerpot people, made a water feature from old tiles, and even created a fake grave to make people giggle when they visit.

“We’ve also created a BBQ area where all the residents in the community can come and sit and enjoy the space.

“All in all, we didn’t spend a lot of money. It was just created using our time and selfless donations from the community. It shows you can still be proud of your home and create a space with little to no money.”

Take a look at their tranquil space below

Ken says that since Staffs Housing took over they’ve been very supportive and feel they listen to their concerns and worries.

“Since Staffs Housing took over, we’ve been overwhelmed with how supportive they’ve been,” said Ken.

“Our old housing provider weren’t local, and we’d never hear from them, but with Staffs Housing that’s not the case.

“We recently had a coffee morning with the housing team where we were able to speak to them about any concerns and it means we feel listened to.

“Then alongside that they’ve been active in the community helping us to clean the streets of litter and keep our community clean.

“We’ve also entered this year’s gardening competition that recognises green spaces like ours and have applied to their community fund for a gate to give us secure access to the space.

“I’m really proud of my home and my community and it’s nice for Staffs Housing to recognise our green space and all the effort we’ve put into it.”

Find out more about community support

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