GREEN-MINDED volunteers have clubbed together to begin building a vegetable patch in the hope it will benefit the community.

The project, spearheaded by community group Friends of the Mistley Anchor, is one of many initiatives taking place in the area.

The group has about 35 members, with many contributing to the mini allotment in New Road, Mistley.

Gazette: The patch is in New Road, MistleyThe patch is in New Road, Mistley

Hannah Saverymuttu, who has got her hands dirty digging the patch, explained the project has drawn a whole host of helpers.

She said: “It has been lovely. People involved with the group have popped down at various times with their seeds or cuttings to help grow the patch.

“We’ve also got a local artist who has designed bird scarers to protect it. We’re trying to bring together all the skills and interests available in the community and use them to enhance the idea.

“There are about 35 people in the group but there are many more in Manningtree and Mistley who are interested, should they ever want to help.”

Gazette: Ben Brown takes a moment to pose after some hard work diggingBen Brown takes a moment to pose after some hard work digging

The group’s main focus, however, is its bid to take on the Anchor Inn, in Harwich Road, Mistley.

The pub’s current landlord put forward an application to convert it into homes, but the plans were refused in January.

It has been closed since the start of the coronavirus pandemic but was acknowledged as an asset of community value in October last year.

“While we’re on the journey of purchasing the pub, you almost feel like you need another purpose,” added Ms Saverymuttu.

“For now, we are thinking of what else we can be doing which is community-minded, and that could come in handy when we’re in a position to get the pub.

“If we acquire the pub it will be a community hub where events, classes, workshops and all sorts will be run.

“At the moment we don’t have this central point, so we have this as a group to help us get to know each other, while doing something green and sustainable.”