If you don’t know what SWNN stands for… *drum roll*… the Street With No Name! Something that has gained quite a status in the Manchester area, so much so that tourists are often seen taking selfies in front of the SWNN sign. You would also know it as the generally unassuming cobbled street down the side of our train station that takes you, through the pedestrian tunnel, into the station car park (which also hosts the weekly and fabulous Levenshulme Market). Not now though, in the last few summer weeks the planting has bloomed as this tweet celebrates!
Together with the community we came together in April to bring much needed love and care to the neglected station alcoves, we cleaned them, covered them with a weed-suppressant membrane and topped with decorative gravel. Fast forward a few months of hard work, coordination and preparation and we all came together again in July to assemble the freestanding wooden planters, install them in place and plant them up!
The planters were made and supplied in kit-form by the lovely people at TreeStation, the veg-growing-grade compost soil supplied by the ever polite people at Kennedy’s Turf and the planting by the just as lovely people at Hulme Community Garden Centre, not to mention all the other plants that members of the community brought and donated on the day.
The SWNN now looks loved and cared for, receiving many compliments by local residents and passers-by. A small number of plants have been stolen or vandalised, which has been a shame, but looking at the bigger picture we are certainly not deterred. We hope that these saddening and seldom incidents will reduce to none soon, while the love from our community for this bit of Levenshulme will continue to grow strong.
Thank you again to all our wonderful volunteers who came to help us assemble the planters (and all the tools you brought along!) and plant them up, to Levenshulme Market for their ongoing support and help preparing for the two SWNN Community Action days, Northern for smoothing out the redtape to make this happen and ACoRP (the Association of Community Rail Partnerships) for part funding and thus adding to our (FoLS) funding pot, as well as Incredible Edible Levenshulme who also contributed part-funding from their original “Manchester Clean and Green” fund from Manchester City Council. Last but not least, a special thank you to Tree Station and Hulme Community Garden Centre for all your support and for offering us a much needed community-group discount that helped our tight budget stretch a little further.