By Céza Da Luz, Community Development Worker – Hollingdean & Saunders Park
Local young people in Hollingdean have created a Youth Council which is designing how to transform the disused skate park area at the back of Hollingdean Park into an eco-café and chill out area open to everyone.
The plan is for WILD.ECOCAFE to be made of recycled shipping containers and powered by sustainable energy and negotiations with Brighton & Hove Council for use of the land are going on right now. WILD members aim to reclaim disused local spaces, restore local ecology, chill out in nature, gain enterprise skills and earn money working in the community enterprise eco-café. A beautiful decked space is included in the plans, looking out over Brighton and the coast. Everyone will be welcome. Dog walkers are particularly pleased with the idea!
How is this all coming about? Local resident and Fundraising consultant Julia Blagbrough, (WILD Director) talked to local people and others who use the area about the disused skate park and how it could benefit Hollingdean. It is clear that local young people want a safe space to hang out in, and to make a positive difference to the environment on our doorsteps. Since then, there’s been massive support. A growing community membership is stepping forward to get involved, including Hollingdean resident and architect, Stuart Hoyle.
Julia has been busy gathering a board of Trustees and establishing WILD as a charity and community enterprise. Local permaculture hero Stephan Gherels will head up WILD’s ecological restoration programme. WILD is also working together with Friends of Hollingdean Park, Hollingdean Ecological Action Project, Brighton Permaculture Trust, and Youth Strikes4Climate Change to name a few.
Ruby Orsola, Sonny Da Luz and Joe Evershed are founder members of the Youth Council who are sending out a call to action asking everyone who wants to join to get in touch.
It’s an exciting time! Want to join in? WILD want to hear from Youth Council and adult community members as well. Email Julia at: [email protected] or check out Facebook: wild.ecocafe or Instagram: wild.ecocafe
Photo of the group below courtesy of wild.ecocafe on facebook