From Pigeon Island to Green Haven

By Stephanie Lynch on 05.01.18

A patch of unused, urban land adjacent to the former Mayfield railway station building in Manchester city centre has had an incredible transformation into the city’s newest and smallest urban park with the help of the Mayfield Partnership’s horticultural advisers, the Green Health Alliance.


The Green Health Alliance is made up of Growing in the City / Men’s Shed Project (GITC), Hulme Community Garden Centre (HCGC), Real Food Wythenshawe (RFW), Debdale Eco Centre (DEC) and Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens (FCFCG). These community organisations are committed to working across Manchester with some of the most vulnerable communities, connecting people and places to nature and improving health and mental wellbeing outcomes for all. 'Healthy Communities' is just one of the priority objectives Manchester has when working towards a zero carbon future (read the Manchester Climate Change Strategy here) and this work is an amazing example of how important partnerships are to create change.


Pigeon Triangle, as the site is informally known due to its popularity with the common city bird, is a 175 square metre grassed area formed by the junctions of Fairfield Street, Travis Street and Baring Street. Transforming this unimaginative patch of land into a green haven not only visually great for the city, but supports urban wildlife which has been in decline for years.  


Around 15 fruit trees are housed in movable planters, made at the Men’s Shed workshop in Openshaw. Once the trees become established, the unloved area will be turned into an edible orchard making it example an inspiration for future urban food projects also.


Kath Whittaker who is working for the Green Health Alliance on behalf of the Federation of City Farms and Community Gardens, explained the impact delivering the projects has had and will have in the future. She said: “The Pigeon Triangle project has been devised and delivered by grass-roots organisations in Manchester whose volunteers have spent many hours making the tree planters using recycled and reclaimed materials.’’


Head on over to see the fruits of the volunteers labours and tweet your pictures to  on Twitter using @MayfieldMCR! If you fancy getting stuck in and volunteering in greening projects in the city then why not get in touch with the Green Health Alliance via @greenhealthGMcr.


Check out Hulme Community Garden talking about the planting session below!