Community Allotment at The City Academy

City-AcademySolardome® glasshouse is long-serving member of local community.

Since 2005, a Solardome® glasshouse has been at the root of a project which unites the local community in Bristol, as well as serving as an outdoor classroom at the City Academy.

The 4.52m diameter SOLARDOME® Haven is home to the award winning Russell Town Avenue Community Allotment (RTACA) which uses the space to develop sustainable and organic gardening skills, as well as holding training and social events. The group enables local residents to share ideas about preparing and cooking produce, and to develop skills in landscaping and garden construction projects. They share a common goal; to work and learn together to produce fresh, tasty and healthy lower mileage food.

In 2009, the RTACA became one of five organisations in the South West to win a ‘Planting Places’ award. The judges celebrated its role in responding to climate change and the role the space has in supporting a healthy and sustainable community.

The Solardome® glasshouse is based at the City Academy in Bristol. In addition to providing an ‘outstanding curriculum which is broad, balanced and cohesive’ (OFSTED 2009) for its 1232 children aged between 11 and 18, the City Academy plays a central role as a host centre for a range of community engagement initiatives.

Richard Davison, Senior Tutor at the City Academy, commented:

“The dome is as much of an integral part of the site today as it was when we bought it in 2005 and has huge appeal. As well as being a hub for the local community, it’s an important place to teach pupils across any area of the curriculum, with a strong emphasis on recycling and sustainability in Humanities and Citizenship, and growth projects as part of Science. It makes a huge impact on the site and everyone enjoys the unique atmosphere inside.”

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