WestRaven Big Local Group

Fantastic evidence of local organisations and communities achieving great results by coming together in partnership can be seen at Hampton Court, in Westwood. The hard work has resulted in a new community café and garden recently opening its doors, thanks to the WestRaven Big Local project.

The project has been brought to fruition by a team of passionate residents and volunteers and supported by local organisations such as the charity Peterborough Environment City Trust (PECT) and Cross Keys Homes, who is the locally trusted organisation for the project.

The newly-opened café and garden is part of a major investment project led by WestRaven Big Local, the community organisation that represents the residents of Westwood and Ravensthorpe. The organisation has received a £1 million grant from the Big Lottery Fund to help make improvements in the area.

Big Local is a long term and innovative programme that aims to achieve long lasting change. It seeks to empower people who live in the area to build on local talents and aspirations so they can help make their neighbourhood an even better place to live, both now and years to come.

The café now includes a kitchen, a wheelchair accessible training kitchen, community area and a youth space with recording equipment. The café furniture was made from recycled wooden pallets and provided by people from the local prison.

The cafe will serve affordable, healthy and (where possible) seasonal or local food. Much of the ingredients is provided by FareShare, the organisation that takes surplus food that would otherwise go to waste, to redistribute it elsewhere.

The café will be a hive of activity with regular cultural, arts, intergenerational, youth and support sessions. Not only does the café provide a fantastic learning space, but there is also a community garden situated near Raventhorpe Primary School for volunteers to get involved with and for events to take place in. Produce from the garden will be used in both the school kitchen and the community café, to show the true ‘plot to plate’ ethos.

The café is now open 8am-4pm, Monday to Friday and on special event weekends. To find out more about the café, call 01733 330040 or go to www.westraven.co.uk. Plus find the project on Facebook and Twitter @WestRaven.

With thanks to Felicity Lyons for her supporting photos.