Green-fingered Dunmow school pupils at St Mary’s Primary School get growing

Compost at Dunmow St Mary's Primary School is made from raw kitchen waste. Picture: CONTRIBUTED.

Compost at Dunmow St Mary's Primary School is made from raw kitchen waste. Picture: CONTRIBUTED. - Credit: Archant

A primary school is on a mission to become “the most green school in Dunmow” after teaming up with a community project that encourages people to grow food in their own gardens.

Get Diggin’ It (GDI) has joined forces with St Mary’s Primary School, with pupils now being invited to grow an assortment of vegetables in the school’s garden.

Cardboard and waste found on the school’s grounds will be used as compost to grow the vegetables.

Director of GDI, Jenny Lynn said: “The loop has been closed on waste at St Mary’s. After a few meetings with Mella Ward, the gardener, the kitchen staff and the business manager, waste is now being redirected into composting projects which means that food can be grown from compost made from raw kitchen waste, cardboard and leaves collected from the school’s grounds.”

Gardener Mella Ward said: “All we have to do now to help the project along is engage parent and grandparent power, by helping with daily tasks such as watering and weeding, to make Dunmow St Mary’s the most green school in Dunmow.”

She added that the caretaker had put down railway sleeper beds into a classroom square.

During the summer months, while school is out, GDI will be harvesting and selling the produce to the community while also preparing seedlings for the primary school during winter so that crops are available throughout the year.

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Ms Lynn, a former secondary school teacher, said: “Growing food extends into all areas of the curriculum from science and biology to maths and even English.

“Working with the land is a fantastic community binder, helping people reconnect and develop relationships all based around one of our most basic needs: the need to eat healthy food.”

If you would either like to volunteer in Dunmow St Mary’s gardens, or lend your skills to Get Diggin’ It’s other gardens, please contact Jenny at or the school directly.