The Malago Greenway Berry Maze is an unique project in the UK, which will see volunteers and school children building a maze made out of berry plants (16 types of them) for the enjoyment of the whole community of South Bristol and beyond. It will be replacing a field of weeds in Brixham Road Open Space (see map) and the works will start this September. If you would like to be a part of this and think you can help in any way, shape or form, please do contact the organisers at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The bulk of the funds have been secured through a combination of grants (Greggs and Grow a Greener Britain) and crowdfunding, but as they’ve opted to replace the weed membrane, which would be damaging to the soil long term, with mulch, which is very much more expensive, and adding to that the usual surprises that come with the project this size, they will really need as much cash as they can get! It only takes 5 seconds for you to vote for MALAGO GREENWAY PROJECT at your local Tesco store, but it would make a huge difference to them.
The project has moved the community and lots of people are joining in. Here are just some of them…
Victoria Park Primary School
Victoria Park School will be joining them in their quest for the maze. For the moment it is agreed that the pupils will come and help with the chalk design for Bristol Open Door Day and the school will ensure that the parents know about the volunteering events. There are hopes that they will also help with the planting and maintenance of the maze.
Friends of Parson Street Railway Station
The Friends of Parson Street Railway Station group have kindly donated to the maze the fabulous mosaic now laying at the entrance of the Station (see attached photo)! The design was also done by the children from Parson Street School and it will look absolutely amazing between the benches, next to the gigantic drawing of the maze done by Harry Ward, the 9 year old master designer of project!
And speaking of designs, Ollie Gage, from Gage Graphics, has joined them too and will help them draw the picture of Harry’s design scaled at a whooping 7×5.5m on the centre of the slab, both for the Mock’a’Maze day in September and the permanent painted version. Ollie is an accomplished local artist, who has made the mural at Oasis Academy Marksbury Road and worked with the BBC too, and he is helping for free! You can see more of his work here: http://gagegraphics.co.uk/
Retired Gentlemen Woodwork Group
The Retired Gentlemen Woodworking Group, based at The Park, in Knowle, have accepted the extremely important task of building the 5 wooden planters which will host the berry bushes. The materials have been bought, so soon they will be starting their work. It’s yet another proof of how volunteer groups can help each other transform Bristol!
Cake by Shaz
Cake by Shaz, a local business, has offered to create a lovely cake in the shape of the maze for the Grand Opening in June next year. Shareena Marshall is fantastic at doing the most amazing cakes you can think of, so she is definitely the person to do it! Here are some examples of her work: https://www.facebook.com/ cakebyshaz/
Bristol Waste Company
Like many areas, Brixham Road Open Space has trouble with fly-tippers. Emma Williams from Bristol Waste Company has been working with volunteers Linda and Christine to visit houses in the area and talk to them about the problem. They are urging local people to report fly-tipping on http://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/ r/malago . It’s too early to say if this will work, but everyone is hopeful. This is an idea that other green spaces might want to pick up.
And… the project finally made it to Bristol Post, thanks to RedRow! Brilliant stuff! http://www.bristolpost.co.uk/ news/property/community-comes- together-transform-neglected- 67841
These are only a few of the groups that have rallied around this project. The Malago Greenway Berry Maze is a great example of partnership working as different organisations help each other out to reach a common goal. But, we’re not there yet and others are also welcome to join in.