Community garden gains backing from Preston Soup event

Posted on - 5th March, 2016 - 12:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Charities, Preston City Centre, Preston News, UCLan, What's On in Preston
Andrea and James pitching their Walton Gardens project

Andrea and James pitching their Walton Gardens project

Soup slurpers helped one Preston community project get its first funding.


Preston Soup, modeled on the popular Detroit Soup initiative, handed £200 to the Walton’s Parade Garden idea.

Staff at Progress Housing Group are working with residents who have mental health needs to create a community garden and vegetable patch.

More than 50 people attended the first Preston Soup which saw three projects pitch to win the funding. Each attendee paid to attend and received a bowl of homemade soup while they listened to the ideas.

Andrea Richardson, community involvement manager for the housing group, said: “It was a pleasure to be invited to pitch for funding for the Walton’s Parade Garden project, which is going to really help us develop the scheme further this year and we will be inviting the wider community of Preston to come along to meet the residents taking part.

“We will also be offering free mental health awareness training to local communities to try and break down the barriers and dispel some of myths surrounding it.”

She was joined in her pitch by one of the Walton residents James.

He said: “It was a great experience and I can’t believe we won. It was a really good boost to my confidence and I really enjoyed meeting new people from my community.”

The Man Cave idea being pitched

The Man Cave idea being pitched

The event was held in Dice and Donuts cafe in Butler Street and the two other projects to pitch were the Preston Food Champions and the Man Cave Project.

The University of Central Lancashire’s enterprise Manager Sally Bate is one of the Soup’s organisers.

She said: “Our launch event was a big success and we received a lot of support that we can now build on. All of the pitches were from very worthy causes and we are already looking forward to hearing from Andrea and the Walton’s Parade Garden project team to see how the funds from our first Preston Soup have made a difference.”

The next Preston Soup is to take place on Wednesday 8 June and organisations interested in pitching can email for more information.

Did you attend the event? What do you think of the idea? Let us know in the comments below

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