SPAR UK Grant Provides Catterick Gardening Group With Tools for A Fruitful Future

A Catterick gardening group has the tools for a fruitful future after receiving a £1,000 grant through SPAR UK’s Community Cashback initiative.

St Cuthbert’s Community Gardeners, based in the village of Colburn, is a group started by the Rev. Andrew Cromarty during the first 2020 lockdown and its founding helped add colour and bring beauty to the area during a time of suffering.

Beginning with two raised flower beds, the group now has ambitions to build many more in the church’s grounds, so community members, members of HM Forces-linked Fijian Community, refugees, and local school children, can grow food and flowers and can access the produce on a ‘pick your own’ basis.

The Community Cashback initiative was launched by SPAR in April and offered 30 grant prizes through SPAR stores across the UK with the aim of providing funding to local voluntary or community organisations and charities who need it most.

In the North of England alone, there were almost 1,300 applications for funding, with just six prizes available for the region ranging from £10,000 down to £1,000.

The Rev. Andrew Cromarty said: “The £1,000 donation from SPAR is brilliant and we are very grateful. We’ve managed to purchase sheds, timber and soil, but we have needed further funding to expand to buy a polytunnel, tools, seeds, fruit trees, and further storage facilities.

“We are a small group of individuals committed to seeing this project succeed, and we are seeking to inspire others in the community to get involved. I think this project is what the Catterick Garrison area needs and this grant from SPAR will significantly boost our potential to grow our impact.”

Tom Murphy, Marketing Manager at James Hall & Co. Ltd, SPAR UK’s primary wholesaler and distributor for Northern England, said: “SPAR believes in nurturing our neighbourhoods and supporting the communities we serve. One way we are helping to do this is by giving back to local organisations through our Community Cashback scheme.

“We know that communities suffered during the pandemic, and the application from St Cuthbert’s Community Gardeners was selected for a grant because it has really helped to bring people together and has the potential to do so much more.”

Five other organisations across the North of England have received grant funding through the Community Cashback initiative. They are Northumbria Blood Bikes, Bolton North East Wildlife Trail, Bury Tandem Club for Blind and Partially Sighted People, The Sensory Spot CIC in Hartlepool, and Bacup Pride.