The Bankside Open Spaces Trust (BOST) is regenerating public open spaces in north-west Southwark and also making new public open spaces. It is a community initiative – and it is going very well. Some of the spaces were neglected public parks. Others are best described as ‘community gardens’ because they have controlled access. BOST is a charity with core funding from Southwark Council and additional money from local businesses and other bodies. In 2013 and 2014 BOST won London in Bloom Champion of Champions Awards for its community gardening work.
My impression is that BOST is making a much better job of the design and management of greenspace than Southwark Council does on its own. The spaces seem better related to local people, more sustainable and more beautiful.
BOST also runs the Edible Bankside programme. Funding came from the National Lottery. It is now being supported by United St Saviour’s Charity. The programme helps local residents and local parks grow more food. There are edible hedges, fruit trees and raised beds for vegetables.