Garden blighted by drug taking and fly-tipping could be transformed

Green Party city councillor Ash Haynes (left) and Amanda Fox, in the former Rose Lane Community Garden

Green Party city councillor Ash Haynes (left) and Amanda Fox, who lives near King Street, Norwich, in the former Rose Lane Community Garden - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

A derelict garden which is attracting anti-social behaviour including drug taking, drinking and fly-tipping could be brought back to life if plans are given the green light.

The Rose Lane Community Garden, owned by Norwich City Council, was previously used as a space for people in the surrounding area to grow fruit and vegetables.

A mattress which has been dumped in the former Rose Lane Community Garden in Norwich

A mattress which has been dumped in the former Rose Lane Community Garden in Norwich - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

But since lockdown anti-social behaviour has increased in the green space next to the former car park, according to city councillor Ash Haynes, who represents Thorpe Hamlet ward for the Green Party.

Green Party city councillor Ash Haynes near a disused bath in Norwich's former Rose Lane Community Garden

Green Party city councillor Ash Haynes near a disused bath in Norwich's former Rose Lane Community Garden - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

Ms Haynes is on a mission to make the barrier around the garden more secure so people cannot access it to commit anti-social behaviour.

Following that she wants to instigate a community group to rejuvenate the plot.

Litter outside the Rose Lane Community Garden in Norwich which has attracted fly-tipping and anti-social behaviour

Litter outside the Rose Lane Community Garden in Norwich which has attracted fly-tipping and anti-social behaviour - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

She said: "It was a nice community space. Most people who live in the flats nearby don’t have a green space. 

"The Green Party is working with the council so the site is secured and there is no anti-social behaviour. That causes a lot of problems for local neighbours.

"Anti-social behaviour includes people drinking and taking drugs on the site which is scary for people who live around here. 

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"It is crucial people feel safe. If you live in an area and feel you cannot walk out of your front door because you potentially might see some drug taking, it limits you.”

The fence by the side of the former Rose Lane Community Garden in Norwich

The fence by the side of the former Rose Lane Community Garden in Norwich - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

She added people were interested in joining the working group.

Keen gardener Amanda Fox, from Norwich, who wants the former Rose Lane Community Garden brought back to life

Keen gardener Amanda Fox, from Norwich, who wants the former Rose Lane Community Garden brought back to life - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

Keen gardener Amanda Fox, 51, a charity worker from Kilderkin Way, off King Street, said: "People want it to be a space for wildlife. If a community garden was open people would be keen to visit."

Rubbish in the former Rose Lane Community Garden in Norwich

Rubbish in the former Rose Lane Community Garden in Norwich - Credit: Sophie Wyllie

A city council spokesman said: “We’re aware of anti-social problems which have affected this area.

"We will continue to work with the police and other partners who all have a part to play in addressing these issues.

“We want our neighbours to have an influence over their local communities where possible, including local green spaces that can be improved.

“That is why we would like people interested in delivering community projects to get in touch with us at community@norwich.gov.uk to discuss what is possible.”