YOUNGSTERS are set to be given a chance to get involved with organising events after a community garden was given vital funding.

East Oxford's Barracks Lane Community Garden, near the Oxford Spires Academy, has been awarded nearly £10,000 from the National Lottery.

The community group, which started in 2007, will use the funds to help young people learn new skills and buy equipment including a pizza oven.

Three events will be held later this year as part of the project with the young people being invited to run their own activities.

Jennifer Creese, the chair of trustees for the community garden, said: “We’re delighted that The National Lottery Community Fund has continued to recognize our work in this way.

"Now, thanks to National Lottery players, we will be able to press on with working with young people to provide exciting workshops and activities for our next three events, and purchase rainwater harvesting equipment to ensure the sustainability of the garden."

Those involved will be trained up in event management and be given more ownership over the running of the garden.

Additionally, the money will be used to purchase water harvesting equipment for the garden’s sheds and pizza ovens so that it can further reduce its environmental impact.

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The garden, run by members of the local community, already has a living green roof and solar panels, a rainwater harvesting system on the cabin, a compost system, a wildlife corridor and bug hotel.

It was founded by volunteers to provide a green space at the heart of the local area for everyone to use and enjoy.

Coordinator Hannah Jones said a facilitator will be brought in to help youth groups to come up with, and organise, the activities.

The next event will be a plants and people day on July 6 from 11am until 4pm which explores the heritage and migration of plants and people and will feature story-telling workshops.

A 'festival of food' and 'lighting the fire' event will follow later this summer.

Ms Jones said: "We hope this will bring more people into the garden and make those already involved feel they have more ownership of the space.

"It'll give them a better idea of how we organise events and help them with their careers in the future."

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The new funding comes from The National Lottery Community Fund, which distributes money raised by National Lottery players for good causes.

It is the largest community funder in the UK.

Groups which already meet up at the garden include young woodcraft folk, the children's allotment and a young mums group.