Windmill Community Gardens is a community food growing project based in the heart of Thanet and has been open since 2004. We aim to improve physical and mental health, wellbeing and community cohesion through educational and environmental activities.
Our Project is spread across two 1 acre sites in the heart of Margate, in our Market Garden we grow our own Organic vegetables, and run a Vegetable Box scheme using the produce we grow and vegetables sourced from local farmers. Across Thanet we have 9 different collection points for people to come and collect their Veg Bags every Thursday.
On our Community Garden we offer a Gardening Club for people to drop into. You do not have to be an expert gardener – and in fact we encourage people to come along and share any skills, not just gardening. Everything we do focusses on healthy lifestyles, wellbeing, overcoming isolation, supporting socialization, and providing opportunity for learning.
We offer our fantastic fun filled and educational Cabbage Patch Parent and Toddler Group for families with a child aged 5 or under on Thursdays. Here families are encouraged and supported to join in with healthy, seasonal cooking, wildlife, art and craft activities, explore the gardens, pond dipping, herb walks, and to socialize and support one another.
We have a Wellbeing Group supporting people with Mental Health needs where participants can be referred by their GP or support worker to attend. People can again join in with various activities including cooking, harvesting, planting, craft, art, socializing and so much more.
Every Saturday morning we run our The Funtastic Kids Saturday Outdoor Club for 8-13 year olds, where children and young people can play, explore, cook and eat, pond dip, grow, harvest, craft, water plants, dig, and play the best hide and seek ever.
Windmill Community Allotments Project (WCAP) is one of the main suppliers to the veg scheme. WCAP has always grown organically since its inception in 2004, although the produce is not certified.
All bought in produce is certified and most is sourced from an organic, family-run farm just 15 miles away.
Profits from the veg scheme help support the aims of the wider project to improve physical & mental health, wellbeing & community cohesion through activities like the Gardening Club, the Cabbage Patch Parent and Toddler Group and the Funtastic Kids Saturday Outdoor Club.
We have built good relationships with small scale family farms in the local area and pay a fair price for their produce. We are transparent and open with suppliers and members about our financial transactions. We work hard to shorten and personalise supply chains as far as possible.
Our scheme is embedded in an established, effective community project, so building community is at the heart of what we do and how we do it.
Everything we do focusses on wellbeing, overcoming isolation, supporting socialization, and providing opportunity for learning. There are lots of ways people can get involved in the veg scheme to develop skills, confidence and foster a sense of achievement.
Our project was started in 2004 in response to local parents request for a safe place for natural outdoor play and to grow vegetables.
Quickly the project expanded from a few disused allotments to a one acre inclusive community garden. Over the years WCG has delivered food, gardening, wildlife, environmental crafts, greenwood working and bee keeping activities to numerous groups and individuals. We also offer training, work placements and opportunities to volunteer.
In 2010 the project expanded further to take on another one acre of derelict allotments to create an organic market garden to sell produce grown via our own vegetable box scheme and to local groups and restaurants.