Thank You to the Volunteers - Johnshaven Community Gardeners

The hidden oasis can be found in Johnshaven

The hidden oasis can be found in Johnshaven

  • by Lee McCann

We’ve had some really amazing feedback from the first couple of features in our ‘Thank you to the Volunteers’ campaign.

This week we turn our attention to another community group who may be lesser known to those in Kincardine and Mearns.

The Johnshaven Community Gardeners, as it says on the tin, work on the Johnshaven Community Garden. They are a group of nine volunteers who deserve to be showcased for the work they have done transforming the old railway line in the village.

If you find yourself coming into Johnshaven via the coast road, follow these instructions, come down the main road and take the first right and then take the following first right.

What you will be met with is a hidden oasis. The garden is beautiful and has a peaceful tranquility that most places only strive for.

Pictures from the garden and members come courtesy of Isobel Groom who joined me on work experience for the day. While we didn’t get stuck in, both Isobel and myself will readily agree that talking to the gardens and playing with Tess (more on Tess later) was a lot of fun.

The small band turn out every second Friday morning from April to October and set to working the garden which has been established for around 12 years. The group had help setting it up from the BBCs Beechgrove Garden team.

Vera Fillingham, the secretary of the group, hesitated at first about getting in touch with us but a big thank you to her for allowing me to come down and tell the group’s story.

Two original members have sadly passed away and are remembered in the garden - they are Maisy and Berit.

Vera told us: “ Apart from being an oasis of quiet for the local people, its the helpers themselves I admire so much.

‘‘One is visually impaired, another walks with the aid of a stick, and another two have had either a stroke or a heart attack. We’re not all walking wounded, but the garden helps these people to do their bit.”

The group do more than just the garden as they also take care of the planters in the harbour area and recycle a lot of their rubbish.. The group work together with SHARK, a small environmental group based in the village.

Vera added: “We collect rubbish, we weed, we ‘snip,’ saw, and gather all unwanted material for recycling at our local compost heap.

“We raised money to replace rotten timber, created a rose garden, and have now got ourselves an extending trimmer to decapitate bushes which looked as if they were sporting Mohican haircuts. Two people of 5’3” can only reach so far.”

Vera and her husband own Tess, a 10 year old sheepdog who is very much apart of the group, always with a stick in her mouth or dropped at your feet ready to throw However, photographing Tess was more problematic as she seem to become a bit camera shy when we tried to get a snap.

Jokes aside, keep up the great work everyone and, from al at the Mearns Leader and Kincardineshire Observer, thank you to the Johnshaven Community Gardeners.




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