Community enhances unloved space

Residents planting up the grass area at the corner of Whyke Road and Bognor Road, Chichester
Residents planting up the grass area at the corner of Whyke Road and Bognor Road, Chichester

Whyke residents took just two hours to plant 1,000 crocuses, helping to enhance an unloved community space.

The grass area at the corner of Whyke Road and Bognor Road, Chichester, was identified by Whyke Residents’ Association as a place that would benefit from some special attention as it is such a prominent site within the recently extended Chichester Conservation Area, shared by those living nearby and others travelling to and from Chichester.

After months of preparation, a licence was granted by West Sussex Highways and clearance gained from Virgin Media.

On Saturday, a small group of residents set to and planted two areas of grass, one with 600 crocuses and another with 400.

Geoff King, on behalf of the residents’ association, said: “There will be considerable anticipation of the Blue Pearl species crocuses coming into bloom early this coming spring, followed by the blossom of three almond trees and clumps of daffodils which had previous been planted.

“It is the hope that there will be other groups of Chichester residents wishing to enhance their neighbourhoods by planting similar areas.”

When planting into the grass turf, they came across the foundations of a former pub, the Roundabout House Inn, which was there for more than 100 years before being sold in 1935.

This was a reminder of a building that had been standing there for more then 100 years, serving the needs of the passing travellers, including Selsey fishermen who took their catch into Chichester to be sold.

Brewers Henty and Constable sold the pub site to West Sussex County Council for highway improvements in 1935.