Allotment loos will be very convenient

CONVENIENT ... Coun Ernest Gibson with Carillion workers Jacqui Hearn, James Wright and Kevin Thomas at Holder House allotments.
CONVENIENT ... Coun Ernest Gibson with Carillion workers Jacqui Hearn, James Wright and Kevin Thomas at Holder House allotments.

A TEAM of budding builders are putting their skills to the test to help a popular South Tyneside community garden.

Apprentices from Carillion have started on a new disabled toilet block for users of the Holder House Allotments in Whiteleas, South Shields.

The construction giant, which is working on the nearby South Shields Community School, donated the manpower and equipment for free after hearing about the plight of those who regularly attend the site, some of who have learning difficulties.

Holder House project manager Chris Convery said: “Having a toilet like this will make the site more accessible to other people with disabilities.

“At the moment, we only have a portaloo which is no good for those in wheelchairs.

“We are so grateful for the help Carillion are giving us.”

The community garden has been on its current site at Holder House for the past two years, and offers a varity of users – including people with learning and physical disabilities, the elderly, and local schools – the chance to go and learn about horticulture, boosting their confidence and gardening skills.

For the next eight weeks, Carillion’s apprentices will be on site creating the disabled toilet.

Carillion community liaison officer Jane Braybrooke said: “The project will take eight weeks to complete, and we have tasked the apprentices to carry out the work.

“It is a project where the apprentices, who we hope will come from South Shields, will be able to see the finished the product.”

Meanwhile, Mr Convery also thanked local firm MLR Services for donating railway sleepers which have been used as a base for a chicken pen at the allotments.

lisa.nightingale@northeast-press.co.uk