Community garden's formal opening after years of planning

Party time: Residents have been invited to celebrate the opening of Royds Community Garden, seen here with Coun Dave Griffin and volunteer Helen Townend who have both worked on the project.
Party time: Residents have been invited to celebrate the opening of Royds Community Garden, seen here with Coun Dave Griffin and volunteer Helen Townend who have both worked on the project.
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A community garden created on council owned land that would otherwise have been sold off for housing will open officially this weekend with a gala that will also see traffic barred from the approach road under the area’s first ‘play ground order’.

Royds Community Garden in Millhouse Green, near Penistone, has emerged from an area of unused land which had been managed by Berneslai Homes, the company which looks after Barnsley Council’s housing, and would otherwise have been auctioned.

The process of acquiring the site and recruiting volunteers to get the garden off the ground was overseen by Coun Dave Griffin, who represents the area, and resident Helen Townsend is now one of the most active volunteers.

Since work began, paths have been installed, an orchard created, planters put in place and other work completed to provide a public space in an area which has few public facilities.

The opening gala takes place on Saturday, from noon until 4pm and will seen New Royd Avenue closed to traffic other than residents, using a type of formal order which has not been used in the Penistone district previously.

Around ten stalls will be set up for the event, with some of those expected to be on the road.

The garden is also involved in the Incredible Edible movement in the area, a network of public open spaces being used to grow consumable produce for use by the community.