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Portsmouth Local Food & School

Portsmouth FOE Logo
Portsmouth Friends of the Earth Association
Registered Charity No 803036

Schools get Big Lottery chance to “Grow to Eat Well”

The environmental charity Portsmouth Friends of the Earth Association [PFOEA] has been awarded a Main Grant from Local Food, a new funding programme supported by the Big Lottery Fund for a £1/4 million project in Portsmouth school grounds.

The project, to be known as “Grow to eat well in Portsmouth Schools” [GTEW], will provide expertise, labour and materials to enable school communities to develop vegetable gardens in their grounds. This will provide children, parents and other volunteers from school communities with opportunities to grow and eat fresh local food, compost school waste and train in horticultural skills.

Kirsty & George

Picture shows Kirsty Scott & George Potter on the proposed GTEW site at Paulsgrove Primary School

GTEW will over three years prepare school sites, install equipment and provide two paid Project Workers to train staff, pupils, parents and others in the school community willing to volunteer to learn how to successfully grow their own vegetables and herbs.

Charter Academy [formerly St Luke’s C of E Secondary] in Southsea and Paulsgrove Primary have been chosen to be “Beacon schools”, hosting the Project’s trainers and setting a “best practice” or “benchmark” standard in vegetable growing and composting.

PFOEA treasurer, John Auric said today “We are very pleased that GTEW has been chosen by Big Lottery [Local Food] and we look forward to working with the schools and volunteers for the next three years. We also have to thank the organisations who have provided us with the matched funding to make this project possible. They are Shaw Trust, Portsmouth City Council, Charter Academy, Hampshire Community Fund, Friends of the Earth UK, Paulsgrove Primary school and Portsmouth Friends of the Earth


Mark Wheddon, Local Food Programme Manager said:
“It is projects like this that have a wide and lasting impact on the community and we are happy to support them. With a record £50 million to distribute to various groups we will begin to see a real change in the accessibility of local food.”

Partnered by the schools and another charity, Shaw Trust Horticulture, GTEW will operate under three themes:
1. To enable communities to manage land sustainably for growing food locally

2. To create opportunities for learning and development of skills through volunteering, training and job creation

3. To promote awareness and understanding of the links between food and healthy lifestyles.

Vice Principal of Charter Academy Ewan Scott said “The types of activity that this extended schools project will offer are a valuable addition to the everyday school programme and give city children the chance to volunteer in an outdoor physical activity, offering them achievements in growing and selling their own vegetables and encouraging healthier diets at the same time.” At Paulsgrove Primary, Head Teacher Darren Nickerson added “the GTEW project will allow children to develop their understanding of where food comes from and how growing their own food can add to their health and well being.”

For more information contact:-
PFOEA: 01243 379018 John Auric Treasurer:

Charter Academy: 023-9282-5302 Ewan Scott:
Paulsgrove Primary 023-9237-5302 Jane Griffiths:


Local Food: has been developed by a consortium of 15 national environmental organisations, and is managed on their behalf by the Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts (RSWT). Supported by the Big Lottery Fund’s Changing Spaces programme,

Local Food will distribute grants to a variety of food related projects to make locally grown food more accessible.

The Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts (RSWT): is a registered charity, incorporated by Royal Charter, to promote conservation and manage environmental programmes throughout the whole of the UK. It has established management systems for holding and distributing funds totalling more than £20 million annually to environmental projects across the UK.

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