The site currently accommodates a series of greenhouses, and ancillary outbuildings set within a large landscaped plot. The site provides sustainable infrastructure to support a network of established community food growers in North London. The site has enjoyed a history of providing community amenity to the area as a food growing space, gathering and communal space. Hawkwood is a community asset for a variety of stakeholders, organisations, and local residents.
Despite the success of the site, some of the existing facilities are inadequate and not fit-for-purpose, particularly the community uses and activities (markets, seminars, event spaces) food growing and food harvesting.
The project will see the delivery of a new educational buildings that would enable the expansion of the existing education programme, alongside volunteer spaces, a community hall and kitchen. The buildings will also create a fit for purpose office for the facilities administration.
Whilst there is expected to be some increase in activities on site, the proposals principally look to provide adequate fit-for-purpose facilities for uses that already take place on site.
The project is proudly a grass-roots community development that has at its core community participation values.
With regards to design, the project champions innovation in building technologies by incorporating low-carbon and low-impact ways, respecting the environment. The circular economy potential is one of the key guiding design principles of the scheme and it is expected that volunteers and local residents will be directly involved with the building operations.
The sites lies within Metropolitan Open Land (MOL).
The proposals provide significant planning gains in terms of access to open space, sustainability and local food growing, mental and physical health, volunteer opportunities and education.