We’ve bagged £5k from carrier bag charge fund January 25, 2017

Martineau Gardens bags £5,000 from carrier bag charge fund

We’re delighted to announce that we’ve been awarded £5,000 from a Tesco funding scheme. Thanks to our supporters who voted in store for us!

Tesco teamed up with Groundwork to launch its Bags of Help funding initiative, which sees grants of up to £5,000, £2,000 and £1,000 – all raised from the 5p bag levy – being awarded to local outdoor community projects every month.

As you know, Martineau Gardens is a therapeutic Community Garden – it is looked after by volunteers, many of whom have mental health issues or learning disabilities. Hundreds of school children visit the Garden to learn about science and the environment. Every year Birmingham people (now in their thousands), visit the Gardens to enjoy its peace and tranquillity.

Caroline Hutton, our Director, says: “This funding will go towards the Therapeutic Horticulture Project. Volunteers garden together – they receive support from a trained staff member and enjoy the benefits of socialising with a supportive group, whilst acquiring new skills in gardening and increasing self-confidence.

Find out more about the Bags of Change initiative below:

Lindsey Crompton, Tesco’s Head of Community, said:

“Bags of Help has been a fantastic success. We been overwhelmed by the response of our customers and it’s been great to give people a say on how the money will be spent in their community. We can’t wait to see the projects come to life.”

Voting ran in stores from 1st December to 31st December with customers choosing which local project they would like to get the top award using a token given to them at the check-out in store. Since launching in 2015, Bags of Help has awarded more than £25 million across more than 3,000 local projects. Tesco customers get the chance to vote for three different groups each month. At the end of each month, when votes are collected, three groups in each of Tesco’s regions are awarded funding.

Groundwork’s national chief executive, Graham Duxbury, said:

“It’s just the beginning for Bags of Help and we’re really excited about the future.  The scheme will be permanently open for applications, and as grants can now be used for not just the development of, but also for the use of local outdoor spaces, we expect even more groups will now have the chance to benefit. It’s projects like these that really help to capture the public’s imagination by illustrating what can be achieved when communities are given the support and the encouragement they need to create better places where they live.”

Funding is available to groups who are seeking to use and develop outdoor spaces in ways that will benefit their local community. Anyone can nominate a local project and local organisations can apply. To find out more visit www.tesco.com/bagsofhelp



#Pledge for Nature January 17, 2017

Greener Birmingham Pledge for the Natural Environment

Martineau Gardens is standing up for Nature and we invite you to join us and Greener Birmingham in signing a pledge committing to protect the natural environment. A coalition of organisations in Birmingham, Greener Birmingham, have united to ensure that the natural environment remains protected at a time when budgets for parks, green spaces and the natural world are reducing.

Georgia Stokes, CEO of The Wildlife Trust for Birmingham and the Black Country explained: “We are incredibly fortunate to have an abundance of beautiful parks and green spaces in this city providing places for children to play, opportunities for exercise and for communities to come together, and homes for wildlife. We all benefit from the natural world even in ways we don’t realise including absorption of carbon dioxide and improved air quality, soaking up excess water helping to prevent flooding, and multiple health benefits. Research shows just looking at a green space can help us feel happier and less stressed.

At the moment funding for these essential spaces comes from a small budget from the local authority which is reducing each year. Management of green space does have a cost but the return on that investment is great. We are asking Birmingham City Council to rethink the cuts to the budget for parks that will secure the essential roles of park keepers and rangers.”

Sarah Royal of Birmingham Open Spaces Forum added: “Friends of park groups donate many thousands of hours of their time every year to improve green spaces for the local communities. They add real value to any investment from the local authority or from other sectors. Friends groups are volunteers and need to work with rangers to achieve results.”

Georgia continued: “Long term a more fundamental shift is required to secure these vital spaces. We need a different model. We all benefit from these green spaces: individuals, businesses, public health, Local Enterprise Partnerships and the West Midlands Combined Authority. We all benefit and we must all be prepared to invest in these spaces for our communities now and in the future.”

Caroline Hutton, Director at Martineau Gardens, an independent charity and Community Garden said:“We’re giving our full backing to this. Although we are but 2.5 acres in size, we are a valued well-loved community space. Green spaces bring people and wildlife together. We have over 60 volunteers helping to look after the Gardens. Thousands of Birmingham people visit us every year, including hundreds of Birmingham school children who come to learn about their natural environment. People volunteer here to improve their mental health, we have over 60 species of birds and have a diverse species lis of insects and mammals including pipistrelle bats. She added: We’re urging Birmingham people and organisations to sign-the pledge.”

The pledge asks people to do everything in their power to:
● support the development of a 25 year plan for the environment recognising the importance of all green spaces in the city and across the West Midlands Combined Authority.
● secure investment to protect, manage and enhance the green spaces and corridors of the city.
● actively manage land within my control to enhance benefits to the natural environment.
To take the pledge for Birmingham’s Natural Environment and to find out more about Greener Birmingham go to ‘I Pledge’ on The Wildlife Trust for Birmingham and the Black Country’s website: www.bbcwildlife.org.uk/Ipledge


Refurbishment Update December 17, 2016

Youngsters sleep-out for homeless at Martineau Gardens December 5, 2016

A courageous band of children aged ten to twelve years old came to Martineau Gardens, to brave the elements of a dark November night to raise awareness and funds for Birmingham’s youth homelessness charity, St Basils. The group decided to build shelters out of cardboard boxes and bring their sleeping bags, they cooked food around a campfire and played games to keep warm.

Pictured above, children (and parents) from the Kings Heath and Moseley Woodcraft group.

This is a subject close to our hearts. Some of our adult volunteers have been homeless, occasionally rough sleeping or are living in hostels. The Therapeutic Horticulture project, where volunteers come together to garden and look after the landscape at Martineau Gardens, means that vulnerable people get the opportunity for fresh air, exercise and friendship and benefit from a sense of wellbeing and achievement.

The event was a satellite sleep out event to coincide with the St Basil’s Big Birmingham Sleep Out 2016.



Bags of Change Grant – We are Tesco Nominees December 5, 2016


5p carrier bag charging began in England over a year ago. Proceeds generated from sales of bags are given to good causes. We’re delighted to announce that Martineau Gardens has been shortlisted for a public vote in Tesco’s ‘Bags of Help’ initiative. Please visit your nearest participating Tesco stores, in December, for us to help us secure a Tesco  ‘Bags of Help’ grant. We could receive a grant of from £1,000 to £5,000 if successful. The following shops are taking part in the voting for Martineau Gardens:

Barnt Green Birmingham Express
Dudley Rd Halesowen Express
Marlbrook Bromsgrove Express
Hasbury Halesowen Express
Stourbridge Halesowen Express
Frankley Birmingham Express
Bournville Birmingham Express
Kings Heath Birmingham Express
Hagley Road Birmingham  Express
Weoley Express
Rubery Metro
Selly Oak Bristol Road Express
West Heath Birmingham Express
Birmingham Brisnl Express
Birmingham Bristl Express

To vote, you will need to make a purchase within store of any value. You will receive one token per transaction and it’s not necessary to purchase a carrier bag in order to receive a token.

Tesco teamed up with Groundwork to launch its ‘Bags of Help’ initiative across England and Wales. The scheme sees three community groups and projects in each of around 200 Tesco regions awarded grants of £5,000, £2,000 and £1,000 – all raised from the 5p bag charge.
‘Bags of Help’ offers community groups and projects across the UK a share of revenue generated from the 5p charge levied on single-use carrier bags. The public will now vote in store from 1 to 31 December on who should receive the £5,000, £2,000 and £1,000 awards.

Sat 26 November – Maintenance work November 25, 2016

Martineau Gardns will be closed on Saturday 26 November 2016 for maintenance work and will re-open on Monday.

Outdoor Kitchen Club at Martineau Gardens November 18, 2016

A photo story of our day spent cooking in our outdoor kitchen, here at Martineau Gardens


12 Nov Cancelled Winter Working Party November 11, 2016

The weather is looking wet for tomorrow, the first meet for our Winter Working Parties. With regret, tomorrow’s session (on Saturday 12 November 2016) is cancelled. We are sorry for any disapointment caused.

Our next conservation working party will be Saturday 10 December – for more information about what’s involved, visit this page.

Martineau Gardens will be open as usual for Visitors, from 10am until 4pm, admission is free.

Help us win an award! November 8, 2016

Sunlight shining on the Paperbark Maple, in our Winter Garden

Sunlight shining on the Paperbark Maple

Martineau Gardens nominated for Fields in Trust UK’s Best Park Award

We’re delighted to announce that Martineau Gardens has been nominated for the Fields in Trust UK’s Best Park Award one of our supporters. Now we need public votes to win. Over the last few weeks 214 nominations have been received by Fields in Trust for parks and green spaces that are a much loved part of their local communities. Now it is time to choose the winners  -please do vote for us here:


The deadline is Wednesday 9 November – winning this award would really help to raise awareness of Martineau Gardens, so please do press the button!

Martineau Gardens is a beautiful therapeutic community garden and a charity, located two miles from Birmingham City Centre. It’s a green oasis teeming with wildlife and is looked after by volunteers, many of whom have mental health issues and learning disabilities. Hundreds of school children visit the Gardens to learn about science and environmental issues. Every year Birmingham people visit the gardens to explore its woodland, glass houses, formal garden, orchard, demonstration food growing areas, wildflower meadow, pond and wildlife area with SLINC status.

Across the UK nominations include large nature reserves and small community gardens, sports fields and playgrounds, each one a green space valued by the local community. Fields in Trust is a national charity that operates throughout the UK to safeguard recreational spaces and campaign for better statutory protection for all kinds of outdoor sites. Martineau Gardens  is one of 214 nominated parks across the UK. The park with the most votes in each of England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland will be shortlisted and nominators will be invited to attend the prestigious Fields in Trust Awards at Lord’s Cricket Ground in November where the UK’s Best Park 2016 will be named.


Fields in Trust Chief Executive Helen Griffiths said: “We want to celebrate the parks and green spaces which are so vital to the communities that use them. A good park is reflective of the community it serves, but, as they are not a statutory service for local councils to provide, these much loved places are increasingly under threat of being lost to development.

“Recognising the UK’s Best Park is a way of revaluing our green spaces; not viewing them just as a drain on resources for maintenance and upkeep – but seeing what benefits they bring; access to good quality recreational space can contribute to the physical and mental health of their local population and provide places for people to get together for community events.”

 Fields in Trust legally safeguards over 2,600 parks, playing fields, playgrounds, recreation grounds and other open spaces throughout the UK – a total of 12,000 hectares (30,000 acres).

Fields in Trust is a national charity that operates throughout the UK to safeguard recreational spaces and campaign for better statutory protection for all kinds of outdoor sites. Founded in 1925 as the National Playing Fields Association by King George V, the mission is the same now and as it was then: to ensure that everyone – young or old, able-bodied or disabled and wherever they live – should have access to free, local outdoor space for sport, play and recreation. These spaces are vital to building happy and healthy communities and sadly continue to be threatened by all kinds of development.  www.fieldsintrust.org


Co-op supports Martineau Gardens September 28, 2016




We’ve got some great news! Martineau Gardens has been selected to receive funding from the Co-op Local Community Fund. It means that we will get a contribution towards the Therapeutic Horticulture Project. But we need your help. The more support we get, the more funding we could receive. So if you’re a Co-op Member log in to your Co-op Membership account and choose us. If you’re not a member, please join and support us!

Co-ops Local Community Fund – Giving back to local communities

By choosing to buy from Co-op, Co-up members are helping local causes on their doorstep through the Local Community Fund. Every time Co-up members buy selected Co-op branded products and services, 1% of their spend goes to a local cause.

Local stores

Co-op Edgbaston   Co-op Moseley  Co-op Jewellery Quarter