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spiralfields – work begins

Work begins on site on the spiralfields project based at Spitalfields City Farm in Tower Hamlets.   Volunteers from the nearby Osmani Centre came along to help out: Jim and Theresa finishing the first raised bed: The amazing Bottle Gourds (Kuda) growing in the poytunnel: ...

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street forage!

The Landscape Institute, Garden Museum and Mayor of London launched ‘A High Line for London: Green Infrastructure Ideas Competition for a new London landscape’. Inspired by New York’s High Line, it was judged by a panel of experts including the founders of the High Line, entrants were challenged to put forward innovative concepts that create imaginative new green space in the capital.   This was our entry: Street Forage The people of Deptford are more aware of the importance of green infrastructure than most. Deptford Green is one of the preferred sites for linkage to the new 'Super Sewer' project being proposed by Thames Water. Those opposed to the proposals have highlighted the fact that a scheme based partly on the use of green infrastructure could provide multiple benefits at less cost. Rationale Street Forage is our response to both the brief and also to the above. What better place to demonstrate an innovative multi functional...

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the forest garden…

The Roundfield trip to Martin Crawford's forest garden had been a long time coming. Talk of Martin's course has been echoing around our office for literally years so we were both pretty chuffed to finally make the journey down to his two acre site near Totnes. “Martin Crawford has spent the last 15 years creating what is almost certainly the best forest garden in the temperate world...

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new studio space

We are very pleased to say that we are now settled into our new studio space. The new site found for Utrophia on Deptford High Street (right opposite the train station) could not be better. All hands were needed to get the place in shape for the opening show at the end of July. It went amazingly well! We found it particularly refreshing to be able talk to people about urban landscapes and potential community growing spaces in the context of an art show. There is a lot of enthusiasm within the Deptford creative community for building local resilience. A great kick start to a new chapter! Even though Utrophia has moved the spirit of the last space lives on!...

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we have moved…

Until recently we have been working from a studio space in an old ice cream factory off Tanners Hill in Deptford. Sadly, this industrial relic is scheduled for demolition to make way for new housing, so it was time to look for  a new space. [caption id="attachment_480" align="alignnone" width="590" caption="Our studio space in an old ice cream factory"][/caption]   [caption id="attachment_466" align="alignnone" width="590" caption="Our 'back yard' with Big Yellow Storage depot construction site in background. Spot the apple tree and the Jerusalem artichokes!"][/caption]   We are excited to announce that our new studio is located on Deptford High Street just across from the train station! Roundfield, Utrophia 120 High Street, Deptford High Street, London SE8 4NS. More on this later...

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croydon charcoal

When we heard that there was going to be a demonstration charcoal burn in Selsdon Wood, we decided to take the afternoon off and take a closer look. The next thing we knew we were splitting coppiced Ash, Oak, Hazel and Cherry for the kiln! Rob Sowter of Croydon Coppice & Charcoal and his band of volunteers use a mobile kiln to hold weekend burns in the surprisingly abundant woodland in and around the Croydon area. We helped load the kiln on Friday afternoon and it was fired up by Saturday lunch time. In order to keep a close eye on the burn and make sure the chimneys were swapped mid burn to reverse the air flow, the guys spent Saturday night in the coppice clearing. When we returned on Sunday there were 43 x 3kg bags of charcoal lined up for sale at £5 a bag. For anyone who hasn’t barbequed with...

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hill holt wood

A Roundfield excursion to the foremost woodland social enterprise in the country proved to be both enlightening and inspiring! Our search for a truly sustainable land based enterprise finally led us to Hill Holt wood in February 2011.  Set in 34 acres of degraded ancient woodland in Lincolnshire, this project is restoring the wood to its former condition through a number of measures such as rhododendron clearance and planting of native broadleaf species to replace those felled during a period of heavy logging prior to the purchase of the wood. What is remarkable about Hill Holt Wood is that contrary to most conservation projects, it actually turns a profit that is reinvested back into the social enterprise. This is possible through numerous contracts with local councils that pay Hill Holt Wood to train and educate permanently expelled school children for a period of 2 years. Interns learn woodland based practical and social...

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