After 25 years of tireless work and dedication, our wonderful, irreplaceable CEO Margaret Tait is taking early retirement on 16th January. She has steered the company through good and sometimes challenging times during her tenure, but has always kept the welfare and wellbeing of our service users, trainees and volunteers first and foremost in her mind and our plans.
During her tenure she has been responsible for the growth of our In-work Horticultural Services allowing service users the opportunity to work and be part of a team either growing and tending plants in the greenhouses or as part of our landscaping team. She was the driving force behind In-work's move to the Broomhill Hub in 2017 managing to procure £2.2m in funding for the highly successful project which as well as housing our own team and the Garden Cafe also hosts the Community Hub.
We will miss her and will be sad to see her go but we wish her all the best in this next stage of her life and hope she enjoys spending time with her family and friends, doing the things that she hasn't had time for before. She deserves all the best things in this world in her retirement years to come!
Broomy Festive Fun
Ho ho ho and a merry Christmas from all of us at Broomhill Gardens and Community Hub. Thank you to everyone who braved the weather to join us on our Broomy Christmas Market day, where we had free, festive, family fun for our wonderful community.
The Clydeside singers kick started the day with beautiful festive singing, and had the whole Hub joining in with their pitch-perfect tunes. After the choir had got the festive buzz going, excited children queued up to meet Santa Claus and his elves, who came all the way from the North Pole to visit kids whose names were on the 'official Santa Claus nice list'.
Afterwards, the children were able to get messy with some fun, eco-friendly arts and crafts in our Tait room, where we were creating Christmas baubles and rustic wooden decorations - or glitter slime, if you fancied it! Older ones were kept busy with a variety of market stalls, selling lovingly handmade decorations, home products, cakes, knitwear, crafts and ornaments.
Market attendees were able to enjoy browsing the items with a hot cup of mulled wine and some delicious home-baking from the cafe, which stayed open till 6pm to feed the Christmas crowd. Talented artist Gadsya was on hand for some face-painting fun, and before long we had a bunch of mini rudolphs and elves running about the Hub! Speaking of elves...who got a glimpse of Jingle?! You couldn't miss the massive Elf on the Shelf, as he came to life to surprise the kids of Broomhill. Finally, we finished the day off with the well-awaited raffle, wherein our customers won some fabulous prizes, kindly donated from local businesses and employers.
If you came to our fantastic Broomy Christmas Market, please let us know and share any pictures you've taken - we'll put our favourites on our website! A huge thank you to everyone involved who made the day a massive success.
Photography credited to Eric Webster
Broomy from Above
Check out this fantastic drone footage of our lovely community hub and gardens. Take a look through our neighbourhood, wander around the function rooms, and see if you can spot some familiar faces. It's all going on at the Hub!
Video and editing credited to Jim Phanco
Broomhill Garden's Climate Challenge Fund Fun Day
18th October 2019
To celebrate the success of our Climate Challenge Fund project, we had our official opening day on Friday, welcoming residents and families of the wider Broomhill area for a day of fun. Advertised as the Broomhill Gardens 'Fun Day', wee ones and older ones alike were promised the excitement of games and activities with the underlying theme of climate change and respect for the natural environment running throughout the day. Our special guests did not let them down!
We had a wonderful visit from the Animal Man team from Glasgow, who brought scaly, furry, and feathery creatures for us to interact with and learn about. Everyone loved cuddling up to the grumpy ducks, wrapping the friendly snake around themselves, and marvelling at the giant snails and cockroaches. Animal handler Stephanie was very professional and we learned a great deal from both herself and the animals. We also had wonderful artist and face-painter Gadsya - from MySweetArt by Gadsya - who filled the Gardens with lots of unicorns, fairies and superheroes. Speaking of which - we even had a visit from Spiderman himself, who took time out of his busy day fighting crime to get some pictures with his fans at the Hub! Kids and parents were also thrilled and inspired by textile artist Susan's climate change and earth themed arts and crafts. We had Jeanette from HeavenlySeaSources who kept our energy levels up with her delicious and ethically-made oat bars and snacks. There's still some on sale in our cafe - grab them before they're gone! We also had representatives from plenty of local projects in attendance, who were able to promote their work, answer questions about climate change, and provide advice on matters of environmentalism.
Of course, the most important part of the day was a focus on climate change and our part in protecting the earth. Amidst all the outdoor fun, crafts, and activties, we had our 'earth pledges' to pin up on our windows with promises we would make to reduce our carbon footprints. From 'always picking up my litter' to 'walking to school everyday', our pledges were inspirational and engaging. We all have our little bit to do in reducing our impact on the earth and protecting it from harm - but at Broomhill Gardens, we're already making positive changes and excited to reduce our carbon footprints through fun, affordable and accessible ways.
We have plenty of new faces joining our regular CCF events - so why not get involved? Leave your name, email and phone number with us to be included in the regular CCF email. Get the chance to cook up a tasty, eco-friendly meal with new friends. Get muddy in the gardens and grow some winter veg in our greenhouses. Take on a carbon literacy course, recycle your old items at our Re-use events, watch a thrilling environmentalism film, and get arty with low-carbon crafts. It's all happening at Broomhill Gardens and Community Hub!
Project Launch for the Local Community
26th July 2019
We were delighted to welcome members of our local community to the unofficial opening of our Climate Challenge Fund project. Taking place in the Broomhill Hub, the day involved a presentation detailing what classes and workshops would be offered, as well as how people could get involved with different parts of the project. We enjoyed the fantastic soup and sandwiches prepared by our talented catering team, and had a blether about climate change over a cup of tea. The discussion involved what could be done to reduce our carbon footprints, both on a personal level and with the support of the wider community - we have a lot of people interested in the upcoming low-carbon cooking classes and growing workshops, so watch this space!
Our new project officer Erin had a laugh getting everyone involved with some climate change games, and then we took a short tour of the beautiful gardens with project manager Allan, who was immediately snowed under with a million gardening questions! To round off the day, two artists from RIG Arts showed us how to make crafts from up-cycled materials. It looks like the adults had more fun than the wee ones when it came to cutting up old t-shirts for weaving!
We have started taking sign ups for future events - our next one being the fun 'movie day' we have planned on the 9th August. Look out your onesie and bring along your favourite snacks as we settle in for a special screening of 'Chasing Coral'. Suitable for all ages, this film will surprise you with facts about global warming and inspire you to make a positive change.
For any information regarding the project, keep up to date through our Climate Challenge Fund social media, check the notice board in our cafe for new events, and contact us at the Hub.
Climate Challenge Fund Award for IAMH
23rd April 2019
We are delighted to announce that Inverclyde Association for Mental Health have been awarded a grant made available through the Scottish Government’s Climate Challenge Fund (CCF) totalling £185,316 over 2 years.
The CCF is a Scottish Government grant programme, managed and administered by Keep Scotland Beautiful. The CCF provides funding and support for community groups to help tackle climate change by running projects that reduce local carbon emissions.
The project will involve the community in an exciting programme to encourage food growing and the use of the seasonal food produced in free cookery classes snf in our own Garden Cafe. The project also aims to provide information and support to the Broomhill community to reduce their food waste, increase composting and make low carbon food choices to help reduce their carbon footprint.
This will allow us to purchase a polytunnel and a large greenhouse to compliment the raised beds planned for the land owned by IAMH adjacent to our Hub. In addition, the funding will enable employment of a project worker who would support community involvement in growing activities on site and in practical workshops.
We will post news of dates for the beginning of the project as soon as we have them and look forward to working with the local aspiring gardeners!
And the Winner is............
24th August 2018
Inch Architects are delighted to have been announced as winner of the Scottish Design Award in the ‘Health Building or Project’ category for the design of our recently-opened Gardens and Hub.
Now in their 20th year, the awards ceremony took place an Friday night in Glasgow, honouring top architecture firms and design agencies for their contribution to the country’s historic and contemporary design culture. Organised by Urban Realm in partnership with the Drum, the awards are open to all Scottish companies and also to those with a Scottish client.
Many congratulations to all the design team led by Inch Architects from everyone at In-Work!
Winners Inch Architects: Nicole Callaghan, Alisdair Clements and Lesley Palmer
BROOMHILL GARDENS HORTICULTURAL TRAINING & COMMUNITY CENTRE DESIGN AWARD NOMINATION
17th August 2018
The Broomhill project has been nominated for a design award at this year’s Scottish Design Awards to be held in Glasgow on 23rd August. The design team led by Inch Architecture and Design’s strong belief in the positive impact on the communities in which we work, beyond the fabric of the building, has created a striking and valuable resource which is fast becoming the very heart of the neighbourhood.
The Scottish Design Awards will be judged by industry experts: one for design, the other for architecture.
The DESIGN panel will be looking for:
- fresh thinking and originality
- beautiful execution
- great storytelling
- work that pushes and progresses the client brief beyond expectations
- work which emotionally connects with its audience
The ARCHITECTURE panel will be hoping to see:
- work that is programmatically, formally and spatially rich
- design that pushes boundaries
- projects that address issues of sustainability
- a people focused, client driven approach
Good Luck to the Design Team from all The Broomies!
The Broomies' Great Get Together
22 July 201
The sun came out for the Great Get Together on 22nd June and so did over 200 locals for a free fun day in the Cafe and Gardens. There was something for everyone, with complimentary High Tea, BBQ, childrens games, face painting, crafts and 'Build a Bear' for local toddlers.
The Great Get Together is inspired by Jo Cox, who was killed on 16 June 2016. Her family believe there is a groundswell of people who reject divisive politics and simply want to bring our communities together and celebrate all that unites us. The Great Get-Together is supported by charities, faith groups and other organisations including the Women’s Institute, the Countryside Alliance, the RNLI, Help for Heroes, Mumsnet, the Glastonbury Festival, the TUC, the Premier League, Hope Not Hate, Amnesty International, Oxfam, Save The Children and the NSPCC. Funding was provided by inverclyde Council and staff from Riverclyde Homes provided staff to organise the games and crafts and supplies for the event.
Thank you to everyone for making it such a great day!
Inverclyde Provost Martin Brennan, Jenny Speck chairperson of Broomhill Tenants' and Residents' Association, Margaret Tait of Inverclyde Association for Mental Health and local MSP Stuart McMillan
A Warm Welcome to our Newest Member of Staff
8 April 2018
We are delighted to welcome Ruaridh Stirling to our team at Broomhill. Ruaridh has been on work experience with our landscaping team at In-Work since September and applied successfully for the newly created post of Caretaker at our centre. Ruaridh is delighted to be joining the team and is looking forward to gaining experience and learning new skills involved in the running of the Community Hub and In-Work Offices.
Margaret Tait, CEO stated that she was very pleased to give Ruiridh the opportunity to work with the team after demonstarting his commitment and hard work during the placemment and knows the rest of the team will extend a warm welcome to him when he starts on Monday 8th April.
Official Opening of the Broomhill Gardens and Community Hub
Local residents and community representatives came together to celebrate the completion of our new Broomhill Gardens and Community Hub in Mearns Street, Greenock on Friday 27th October by Provost Martin Brennan.
The initiative undertaken by Inverclyde Association for Mental Health and managed by InWork Enterprises Ltd and local residents, and designed by Inch Architecture and ERZ Landscape Architects, has seen the transformation of two derelict brownfield sites into a horticultural training facility, community hub, café and offices.
Lesley Palmer, architect and founder of INCH Architecture, is an enthusiastic advocate for green spaces in residential areas. She said: “Inch and our design team are honoured to have been able to work with IAMH and the Broomhill community on the design and delivery of this wonderful project. From the outset the design team worked to create a local amenity where people can meet and enjoy the benefits of horticulture. Public green space is a valuable and much needed asset for all of our communities and we hope this series of green spaces will provide a backdrop around which IAMH and the local community can flourish together.”
The £2.2million project has been funded by the Big Lottery Fund’s Life Transitions Programme, Inverclyde Council and the Scottish Government’s Regeneration Capital Grant Fund.
Please come along and visit our Garden Cafè overlooking the courtyard and have a look around our Community Hub and training rooms. We look forward to welcoming you!