Visiting GROW at Totteridge Academy

After a brief visit earlier in the summer, it’s been a pleasure to return to GROW, the inspiring outdoor classroom at TTA as the harvest sets in.

On both visits, skies were a little gloomy, but the rain held off, so I was able to stroll around and appreciate the scale of this remarkable project. Back in 2019 we covered the online crowdfunding campaign that made it possible and, as a result, children and adults now have an opportunity to learn how to grow their own food, get outside and develop new skills that they might not otherwise be able to access, putting people back in touch with the food chain.

The location of the site in the Green Belt, with Chipping Barnet visible to the north demonstrates our unique combination of town and country and maximises its position. Despite the challenges of the past 18 months, it’s great to see how GROW now has a weekly vegetable stall, regular events and workshops (check Instagram for details) and provides the Head Chef at TTA with affordable, fresh organic produce grown in collaboration with its pupils, staff and families to create school lunches each day.

As well as the produce and flowers (beautiful examples for picking, along with the sunflowers planted between rows of pumpkins and courgettes), our pictures show the hen coop and upturned looking Warre hives for sustainable beekeeping which leaves the bees undisturbed (with hives only opened once a year). The final picture shows Chris Haigh, Senior Grower was previously a chef and passionate about seasonal, local produce.

The produce stall is every Thursday 3pm to 6pm, just opposite the main TTA school gates and will run until early November, returning in April as is open during the main growing/harvesting season.

Visiting GROW at Totteridge Academy
Totteridge Academy, Barnet Lane, London N20 8AZ

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