Council brings innovative rain garden to Kettering

By Maggie Don on September 12, 2016

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Kettering Borough Council has brought an innovative environmental feature to the borough, as part of work to transform a grassed area into a new car park.

The installation of a rain garden on Northumberland Road is a new venture; it functions as a flood prevention tool, provides nourishment for a number of plants and presents a calming space for residents.

The rain garden has been built on a patch of grass in Northumberland Road that had suffered from being used as an improvised car park. The council decided to develop part of the spot into a permanent parking site for eight cars, while improving the look of the area.

Brendan Coleman, Head of Environmental Care at Kettering Borough Council, said:

[quote]Kettering Borough Council is always looking at ways to become more eco-friendly and when constructing a new residents’ car park in Northumberland Road it seemed like a perfect opportunity. Not only does the rain garden improve drainage from the car park, but it also acts as a small flood relief pond and improves the area’s appearance. The positive attitude from local residents has been very welcoming and we would like to develop new drainage solutions in future projects within the Borough.[/quote]

Tenants Christine and Penny, who live opposite the new feature, said:

[quote]The area was in a terrible state before and parking was a big problem with the verge being churned up, especially when wet. The works are a fantastic improvement and the car park has made a huge difference.

We were curious to see how the rainwater garden was going to look and even before it has been planted and seeded, it looks a lot better than it did. It’s nice to see something different and to be the first in the Borough to have a rain garden makes us feel very privileged. We’ve got much more than we expected and we’re over the moon![/quote]

I have lived in the borough for almost 40 years, and raised my family here. I was first elected to Kettering Borough Council in 1994, and was deputy leader of the Labour group, and lead spokesperson for housing and the voluntary sector, for many years. Now retired, but for many years I was the CEO for Kettering Centre for the Unemployed running education courses and providing support to those with little or no basic qualifications. I was elected to the new Kettering Town Council for Wicksteed & St Michaels and to Burton Latimer Town Council in May 2021.

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