Go wild at the forest garden!

Come and join us in the garden to see some of the amazing things we do.
We are open every Tuesday and Friday 10am – 3pm – come along and volunteer!

If you are thinking of coming along here are a few guidelines.

Our workdays are Tuesday and Fridays 10am-3pm.

Please arrive at 10am on your first session so we can show you round with any other new volunteers. If this is a problem let us know. We are very flexible and you do not have to stay for the whole session or commit every week.

Wear clothes you don’t mind getting dirty and wear proper boots. We have some rain coats and wellingtons if the weather’s bad.

We will supply you with hot drinks and biscuits throughout the day and a hot meal at lunchtime.

We sometimes have surplus vegetables for people to take home but most of our produce is used to cook a hot meal for everyone at lunchtime.

Tasks are varied throughout the season – from planting and weeding to more physical tasks such as shifting manure up a steep slope. Please let us know if some of the physical tasks are too demanding.

We are quite hard to find so make sure you know the way! – please note we are not based on Queens Road, that is just our postal address.

For volunteers that commit to the garden for a few months we are happy to find relevant training courses for them.

Please be aware that during work days pupils will be at the garden for school visits or work experience. Please be respectful and mindful of this work.

If you don’t want to do gardening but still want to support us there are many ways you can. For instance, have you got expertise on funding applications or indeed any other skills that could be beneficial in helping us administer the charity?
Or, if you’d like to help us monitor and record the wildlife, flora and fauna in the woods, please take a look at our Queensdown Woods management plan.

Finally, as with all small charities, fundraising is a constant problem and we are delighted when supporters set up regular standing orders. You could also organise a benefit concert, do a car boot sale or run a marathon for us!

Corporate volunteering

We can offer group volunteering sessions at the Forest Garden, with the opportunity for teams to work together outdoors in the fresh air, with free exercise included! We can arrange special volunteering days or accommodate small groups as part of a regular programme. Tasks can include

  • Gardening, including planting, digging, pathway repairs, harvesting, weeding, general garden improvement tasks
  • Cooking, food prep, washing up, tidying storage areas
  • Litter picking
  • Woodland management
  • Wildlife surveys

All tools and equipment are provided, and you will receive training and supervision. And a gourmet lunch, tea, coffee and jammie dodgers.

Over the years we have made friends with some great local businesses and can show some significant benefits to both business and our charity from this kind of partnership, including

  • Better team working, getting away from the work environment to think differently
  • Health and well-being benefits of working outdoors in a positive environment; working, eating – and having a laugh together!
  • Authentic engagement, building understanding of a range of community challenges
  • Joint reputational benefits, with positive stories, blogs and social media

We are a small charity running on a tight budget, so ask that you consider a donation per person to cover costs (we suggest £25-£50). All donations contribute towards the long-term sustainability of the project, enabling us to offer our service to people less able to pay.

And if your team is good at fundraising, running marathons, getting sponsored for anything, putting on cake sales or clothes swaps – or any other brilliant ideas then we would love to hear from you!

Contact Warren Carter to discuss what you’d like to achieve, and how you can help the project in return.