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Sunnyside Community Garden rises from the ashes

  • Date: 03 September 2013
  • Author: Charles Dean

Disabled park users in Islington are celebrating this week after their base - destroyed in an arson attack - was replaced with a brand new Portakabin.

Sunnyside Community Gardens, N19, sustained the damage in the early hours of Monday 29 July which left the popular meeting place - known locally by users as 'The Shed' - unusable.

After learning of the incident, quick-thinking by Islington Council's parks team Greenspace and newbuild council homes contractor Mulalley put their heads together to find a solution.

Mulalley donated a brand new Portakabin which was installed on Saturday 31 August and officially opened by Cllr Rakhia Ismail on Monday 2 September.

Cllr Rakhia Ismail, Islington Council's executive member for sustainability said:

"Islington's parks are there to be enjoyed by everyone and we have made significant investment in improving them and making them more accessible.

"So I am delighted the Sunnyside Community Gardens' meeting place has been replaced little over a month after it was badly damaged by fire.

"I want to thank Mulalley for their generous donation which means disabled users and staff have somewhere dry, warm and safe to meet for community activities as we move into autumn and winter."

Salvatore Capotosto, Project Manager for Mulalley said:

"Mulalley is pleased to be able to help Sunnyside Community Gardens with this very important step to fully restore the activities on offer at this popular venue.

"We have a solid working relationship with Islington Council due to their large newbuild council home programme for which we are appointed as one of the main contractors.

"As part of our corporate social responsibility programme, Mulalley's is delighted to reprovide this facility for the benefit of the borough's community so it can strengthen social and learning activities for disabled people and other park users."

Sunnyside Community Gardens' Chairman David Arkin said:

"The management and staff of Sunnyside Community Gardens wish to take this opportunity to thank Islington Council's Greenspace Team and Mulalley for providing a seamless transition for Sunnyside Community Gardens to recover from the recent arson attack by providing secure hoardings and a fully serviced Portakabin.

"Without their urgent and free response the local community could have lost the opportunity to continue."

Sunnyside Community Gardens is a green space operated by Islington Council and volunteers since 1992.

Education activities for older and disabled people at Sunnyside include gardening and wildlife appreciation.  The gardens also provide natural history and bicycle maintenance programmes for

local schools, other groups and individuals from the community. 

Sunnyside Community Garden

Hazellville Road

N19 3LX

Open Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday: 10:00 - 16:00

020 7272 3522

To make sure activities on the site can continue, The Portakabin will remain until a permanent repair or replacement can be made to The Shed.

Sunnyside have appealed to the public for funds.


Or come along to:

Sunnyside Fundraiser

From 4pm, Saturday 7 September

Royal Oak Pub

St John’s Way


Food, drinks and a charity auction with items donated by local businesses.