A community group wants residents to reap the health benefits of growing their own food with a campaign for a communal vegetable garden in Dyke Road Park.

The Friends of Dyke Road Park is looking to drum up local support for the proposed garden as a means of persuading the council to offer their backing to the plan.

Group spokesperson Alison Whiteoak, of Dyke Road, said: "We are asking for permission from the council to do this and they haven't actually agreed it yet. We haven't formally got that permission. Obviously we're hoping that they will give it to us. It's just a wish at the moment."

As well as aiming to encourage people to start growing healthy, organic food – either in the park or at home – Mrs Whiteoak believes that the project can have a therapeutic benefit for any would-be gardener looking to get involved.

She said: "Lots of people who haven't done it before seem to be interested in growing vegetables, and I'm one of those really. But I'm also interested in it from a health benefit perspective, in terms of doing some physical activity. It's very good both for your physical health and your mental health, as well as it just being a nice thing to do."

People interested in the project can speak to members of the group at Dyke Road Park Café, where there will be a stall positioned outside, this Friday February 11th from 2.30pm to 5pm.

Mrs Whiteoak said: "We're going to be giving away seeds and just encouraging people to come and find out a bit more about what we want to do. Also to get some feedback from people about what they think of the idea; whether they think it would be a good thing, whether it would improve the park, whether people would want to get involved - that kind of thing."

The Friends of Dyke Road Park will also be having a group meeting at the café on Tuesday March 1st at 6:30pm. For further information, please contact Alison Whiteoak on 07852 224937 or alisonwhiteoak@yahoo.co.uk.

by Chris McDonald