Growing new shoots in green spaces 

Torbay Weekly

Spring is a time when, after surviving a time of little light or warmth, trees and plants start to put on new growth.

The days become longer, the ground warms, and cells start dividing at pace.

Animals also perform a ‘renewing’; moulting their winter coats, cleaning out nests and burrows, or maybe even becoming active after a period of hibernation.

This feels like it could be a time of new growth for our community too, emerging out of a period of darkness into brighter, more hopeful times.

Over recent weeks, calls, emails and on-line meetings with residents, councillors, Community Partnerships and more, have all focussed on the same thing: working together to ensure our green spaces are able to support us as we stretch out tentative new shoots of growth.

We need to help our communities bring together ideas and plans for local green spaces, and make sure the skills, knowledge, and confidence to put them into action are there.

From Wednesday, April 21, Groundwork South is switching its weekly Green Café from virtual to in-person sessions.

The hour-and-a-half long cafés are open to everyone and are aimed at helping people learn about caring for community green spaces.

They will cover a range of useful topics; from carrying out practical tasks, such as planting a tree or creating a wildlife habitat, to organising community activities, like litter picks or citizen science surveys of wildlife, and more.

The café sessions will sit alongside the work that Groundwork South and SWISCo are already doing, supporting community and green space groups to develop individual site action plans that bring together wants, needs and aspirations for that place.

By caring for green spaces, we are not just safeguarding ‘locations’, we are also preserving all the benefits they offer us; ensuring that the local green spaces that helped us through the dark times continue to be a place for play, relaxing, exercise or meeting in a safe, socially distanced way.

To find out more about the Green Café and how to support Green Spaces in Torbay, please contact Hannah Worthington on 07940510616 or email