Shipping container shopping hub and green barn: Exciting plans proposed for Grimsby Garden Centre
Putting down roots - the story so far…
Grimsby Garden Centre was bought by NAViGO in October 2015, and has been brought up to date by its new owners, but is still changing and expanding.
So, why is Grimsby Garden Centre part of NAViGO - a social enterprise which runs mental health? Well firstly, NAViGO, aims to get people from disadvantaged backgrounds and people with mental health difficulties back into work by offering them real working life skills, while providing support and education. This often leads to employment and further opportunities for individuals.
Grimsby Garden Centre is a not-for-profit organisation, so any profit made by the garden centre goes back into its upkeep and straight into NAViGO, to be used to improve mental health services across North East Lincolnshire. This means that when you support Grimsby Garden Centre, you are also helping to support people in your local community with mental health difficulties.
Our community grows with us
We have many volunteers here at Grimsby Garden Centre, gaining experience in everything from greeting customers on the shop floor, stock taking, potting and pruning plants, to working in a busy restaurant environment. Our volunteers not only gain work experience and education but also find a place to make new friends and socialise with people with similar interests.
Since taking over Grimsby Garden Centre, we’ve found the therapeutic properties of working outdoors in an inclusive social setting have benefited members mental and physical wellbeing, as well as their employment prospects.
The seeds of an idea…
Over the last four years, we’ve seen the centre thrive - a haven for green-fingered local residents (as well as a popular spot for regulars who can’t get enough of our fish and chips), providing more opportunities for local people and generating over £1 million pound turnover to support the centre and mental health services.
NAViGO is truly unique. Always ambitious, we’re keen to grow where we’ve planted. And have exciting plans for the future.
We want to:
Create an attractive and accessible centre enjoyed by more local people
Boost our sales and secure our sustainability so we can continue to invest in employment and training opportunities and support mental health services across the borough
Improve our environmental commitment by minimising waste and using sustainable energy where possible.
Using repurposed shipping containers, we’d like to create a front entrance feature extension; a hub for local independent businesses and a unique shopping experience.
Build a green barn with wool insulation, reclaimed materials, composting toilets and rainwater harvesting; a flexible use space for activities and events powered by a sustainable wind turbine.
We’d also like to extend the garden centre; to improve both our café and indoor shopping area; increase the capacity of our car park and relocate it to the side of the building and repair and expand Maltby Avenue – the access road.
Split into phases, this is a three-year development plan.
NAViGO Head of Employment and Commercial Services Jo Keen said: “We want to create an attractive and accessible centre enjoyed by more local people while boosting our sales and securing our sustainability so we can continue to invest in employment and training opportunities and support mental health services across North East Lincolnshire.
“At NAViGO, we are truly unique – we are always looking at innovative new developments and the creation of a shipping container retail space would be extremely exciting for the local area providing opportunities for small, local, independent businesses.
“The addition of a green barn allows us to provide activities and events but also demonstrates our environmental commitment by minimising waste and using sustainable energy.”