A NEWPORT church has launched a new community garden, as part of plans to open up to the wider community.

Members of the congregation at St Paul's and St Stephen's with Holy Trinity Church, on Adeline Street in Pillgwenlly, joined Keep Wales Tidy to install a new planter outside the church.

The planter is part of Keep Wales Tidy’s Local Nature for Places project, which aims to create, restore and enhance green spaces across the country.


“We have one planter, and Keep Wales Tidy dropped off all the materials and soil,” said church volunteer Valery Ede. “Matt from Keep Wales Tidy came down and showed us how to put the planters together.

“We’ve applied for funding for more planters and wild flower packs. We also want to make a trail for the children around the grounds.

“We are hoping to include Pillgwenlly School. We want for the children to plant sunflowers so they grow all around the church.

“We are going to be starting a gardening club and encouraging residents to come in and take part. It’s about being part of the community.”

“People and groups, like the school, can take on a raised flower bed themselves,” said Reverend Justin Groves. “It’s not a church garden, it’s a community garden.”

The church also has plans to transform the garden of remembrance in to a contemplation garden.

“We want to make it more of a reflective, peaceful place,” said Rev Groves. “More of a garden area with plenty of shrubs and small trees and maybe some artwork.”

The church has recently undergone a transformation to become more of a space for the community to use.

The pews have been removed and replaced by non-permanent seating, the carpet has been replaced, and a new radiator and boiler have been installed.

“It’s quite a transformation from what it was,” said Rev Groves. “We’re getting to the situation where people are asking about the hall and the space inside the church, which is good as the transformation of this space wasn’t just for the church, it was for the community as well.”

The church also runs a Swap Shop – a clothes bank primarily focusing on providing jumpers for those in need.

“We are aware of the Universal Credit cut and the rise in energy prices and the impact that will have,” said Rev Groves.

Rev Groves said the church was looking to work with groups in Pill to work together serving the community.

“We are working with some amazing groups here in Pill, and we don’t want to try and reinvent what they are already offering,” he said.

“There’s a lot of good stuff that happens in Pill that goes unnoticed.

“I’m very passionate about learning from each other and sharing resources.”

The church is also taking donations for local school uniforms and winter coats for children, and will be running collections for the Christmas Bags of Hope and the shoebox appeal for local children.

To find out more about the Keep Wales Tidy’s Local Nature for Places project, visit keepwalestidy.cymru/pages/category/nature