A community housing project, aimed at getting long term unemployed people from Solihull back into work, has been given tools to help trainees transform wasteland into allotment plots across the borough.
Family bakers Warburtons gave around £500 worth of equipment to the Pathway course. The course employs trainees to do projects that benefit Solihull and help provide the participants with a work portfolio to show future employers.
The equipment has already been put into use when clearing a plot on the council-owned Gillcott Allotments, off Old Lode Lane, which will be given to charity.
In order to reduce the waiting list for allotments, the Pathway course participants have been supporting Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council’s community champions project to clear wasteland near allotment sites so that they too can be used as allotments themselves.
Yvonne Platts from Solihull Community Housing, who runs the Pathway course, said: “The tools are a great help to the Pathway scheme and the local community, providing meaningful employment for the course participants.”
Councillor Kate Wild, Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council’s cabinet member for community services and the environment, said: “I’d like to say a big thank you for the equipment. Encouraging people to learn about the origins of the ingredients of the food they eat everyday is a key objective for myself and the council.”
According to figures released in January there are more than 300 people waiting for an allotment on one of Solihull’s 19 sites.
Mike Ewing, from Warburtons Midlands, said: “It’s fantastic that so many people are passionate about the ingredients which go into the food they eat as we are when it comes to baking.”