Win a new school building competition - Netherhall School

Netherhall School
Maryport, Cumbria


'Growing together - our environment, community and learning.'

Judges’ comments:

An interesting, innovative and well worked out bid in an area with high need. Their vision of a walled community garden is exciting and unique. A really good example of community engagement.

Watch their one minute video pitch

View their photos

Read their original 300 word entry

Netherhall School is the only secondary school in the harbour town of Maryport, on the West Cumbrian coast. Surrounding wards have some of the highest indices of multiple deprivation and child poverty in the country.

Our aim is to transform our school allotment into a walled community garden. As the only secondary school in Maryport we yearn to widen learning opportunities to the community.

Our vision is to become a ‘gardening school’ within a ‘gardening town’. We want to create a purpose built, innovative learning ‘shed’ that stimulates pupils, their families, and community groups to ‘grow their own’ in the school garden, home gardens and community green spaces.

Demand for the local Foodbank in the Netherhall ward increased by 156% last year. The Mayor of Maryport said: “It shows the way the economy is going, things are getting worse and worse. Voluntary organisations are going to come more to the front. It’s quite scary, quite frightening and very concerning.”

These are just some of the ways our learning ‘shed’ will function:

  • GCSE Horticulture students supply vegetables for GCSE Catering students and the school kitchen
  • GCSE Child Development students work with young children and families in partnership with local primary schools and Barnardos
  • Raised beds to be looked after by local community groups i.e. Age Concern, Mind
  • Health and Social Care students work with a range of adults in partnership with local health services
  • Work is undertaken with housing, resident and tenant associations to initiate community orchards, planting, social and growing activities

Along with the environmental, health, social and welfare benefits, supporting our community to collectively grow its own food may be a contributing factor in promoting our students’ and their families’ cognitive, social and personal development.

Back to finalists page