Gals stands for Gardening Around Leamington Spa, and also is an acronym for Gill, Annabel, and Lyn, the founders of the group. Contrary to popular belief, it’s not a female only group and new members are welcomed at any time.
The Gals have won numerous gardening accolades since they began working together on the Station Gardens in 2005, from Community Awards, RHS Neighbourhood Awards, various grants from banks, local authorities, O2 etc, and ending in 2012 with the Queens Award For Voluntary Service, having been nominated by Royal Leamington Spa Town Council.
They took over gardening at The Dell, a small neglected park on Warwick Place/Beauchamp Hill in 2006, but still maintain and look after it, by clearing and replanting. They also tend small neglected spaces wherever they’re found in the town. They have been called Leamington’s Guerrilla Gardeners, but are known mainly for the work in the park, which has been transformed from a neglected ill used space, to a popular, beautiful oasis in the middle of the town.
Photos courtesy of Annabel Rainbow