London school given funding for edible garden

Berrymede Junior School in Ealing, west London has been announced as the first of 10 Edible Playground flagship schools to receive support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery Dream Fund, which has awarded £249,180 in funding.

Edible Playgrounds, a programme led by Trees for Cities, will transform an area of their school grounds into a functional food-growing space.

The Edible Playground at Berrymede will have raised beds with herbs, salads, vegetables, fruit trees, an outdoor classroom, interpretation boards, composting facilities, irrigation and a greenhouse. The construction of the Edible Playground is due to take place in the summer.

Trees for Cities will provide a year of support to help Berrymede use their Edible Playground for year-round growing and teaching.

The pupils will enjoy hands-on cooking lessons from Chefs Adopt a School and have access to food education programmes outside the school gate via charity School Food Matter’s Membership for Schools. School Food Matters will also support Berrymede to achieve their first Food for Life Award.

Sharon Johnson, chief executive of Trees for Cities said: "With increasing concerns around food poverty and malnutrition, the next generation is in danger of losing touch with nature and not knowing why a healthy diet is important. Edible Playgrounds show children how rewarding it is to spend time outdoors and get them excited about where their food comes from.

"With 37 per cent of children between ages of 5 and 12 not eating enough every day and 20 per cent obese on leaving primary school, more and more schools are now educating their children on how food is grown and on making healthy eating choices".

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