Date: January 2021

Client: Whitby In Bloom

The Whitby in Bloom Group is comprised of individuals and representatives of organisations throughout Whitby who seek to work together to promote, support and develop their beautiful town.  They aim to use horticulture to enhance the environment in which we live, work and play.

From preserving and improving areas to create beautiful places for all to enjoy, to brightening up key access points within the town, the volunteers work tirelessly for all to enjoy.

 

This years projects involve creating a ‘Whitby Haven’: A safe port in a storm of environmental change.

Over the last decade the environmental responsibility and community participation aspects of Whitby in Blooms projects have expanded and our work currently supports the local economy, promotes heritage and eco-tourism and encourages all sectors of the community to join together to ensure the biodiversity and resilience of our environment is improved.

Whitby’s Bloomers ensure our diverse rural, urban and coastal habitats are cared for, free from litter and thriving.

Whitby Haven is an innovative project which ensures that new adaptations for climate change not only provide protection for human residents but also enhances the natural habitats and mitigates man-made environmental depreciation.

Phase 1 will see the creation of pollinator highways focused on container planting and the soft landscaping of pavements, car parks and the new flood defence wall. Learning from Sheffield’s Grey to Green project this phase would see sustainable horticulture at the heart of Whitby, with attractive new linear public spaces and the creation of green pollinator corridors.  The creation of pollinator-friendly passages along the harbour edges and along the cliffs would link Whitby’s green spaces through the town centre to the ancient woods along the banks of the River Esk and the flood meadows on the opposite banks.

Phase 2 will concentrate on the creation of swales. These swales would form part of a sustainable urban drainage system, designed to manage water runoff, filter pollutants, and increase rainwater infiltration.  Filled with wildflowers, grasses and shrubs these will be visually attractive, good for pollinators and would help mitigate the effects of stormwater run-off from the car parks, roads and pavements.

Phase 3 of the project will be an innovation in water quality enhancement. Through the use of soft engineering and based on projects trialled on the River Thames we would create plant habitats that would rise and fall with the tides. Combining different layers of growing/filtration mediums with salt-water tolerant planting would create wildlife habitats that would improve water quality, trap pollutants and improve water flows within the harbour, with the possibility of reducing the need for dredging. This is an ambitious project needing to combine the skills of botanists, hydrologists, the local councils and harbour master, local residents and harbour users.