Cinder Track restoration scheme benefits school gardening projects

Green fingered school children in Scarborough are getting the chance to improve their school gardens and green spaces thanks to the Cinder Track restoration scheme being delivered by PBS Construction.

The £490,000 restoration scheme to provide much needed improvement to the southern end of the Cinder Track – a popular traffic-free route between Scarborough and Whitby – includes widening of the track in places.

Soil that needs to be removed as part of the widening process has been freely donated to Gladstone Road Primary School, Scarborough, to create beds for planting and to improve existing ones. The surplus soil was delivered to the school by PBS Construction, the company carrying out the Cinder Track restoration scheme for Scarborough Borough Council.

Children, teachers and governors at the school are keen to make their school a greener and more environmentally friendly place through their gardening club and already have a small number of planters in which they are growing flowers, cabbages, leeks and spinach. The soil donation will allow them to increase the number of planters in the school playground so they can grow more flowers and vegetables, and attract more wildlife.

Jane Pepper, Gladstone Road Primary School chair of governors, said: “Being able to get free, good quality soil as a result of the work on the Cinder Track was too good an opportunity to miss. Thanks to the council and PBS Construction there is now an exciting heap of soil on the school site that will allow us to begin new planting as soon as possible.”

Tim Burkinshaw, Scarborough Borough Council ecologist and biodiversity officer, said: “Soil is a precious resource so it’s great to encourage local children to grow their own using surplus topsoil from the track improvement work near their school.

“We have kept back the lower grade subsoil to form a wildflower embankment alongside the track. Wildflowers do better in poor soils so this is a win-win.”

Brendon Smurthwaite, PBS Construction community manager, added: “As a business we love to engage with the community as much as we can, whether that’s through helping or working with schools, charities or community groups.

“When the soil donation to Gladstone Road Primary School was mentioned we were more than happy to play our part and hopefully it will make a real difference to them going forward.”

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