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The greening of Acklam Road

Unless you've had cause to visit, you might well be entirely unfamiliar with the stretch of Acklam Road between Portobello Market and Westbourne studios. The streetscape there is dominated by the Westway flyover that runs over it. As a result, it's hardly an attractive corner of Golborne Ward.

But local residents decided that this seemingly barren site could be vastly improved. So, with the help of Kensington and Chelsea Council, a project to green a section of Acklam Road came into being and the results are outstanding.

Some 2,000 new plants are in place, many of them planted by local volunteers from the Swinbrook Estate Residents' Association. There is a small copse of silver birch trees. One section has a natural wetland which will soak up rainwater. There's a little wooden shack that looks like something from a fairytale but is actually a specially designed environment for invertebrates. Biodiversity is a key aim of the project.

Where did the money come from for these improvements? A large chunk came from the Council's Estate Improvement Budget. It allocates funds — £67 per council-owned dwelling per year - for amenity enhancements. Other funding came from Mayor of London's Grow Back Greener Fund and the Westway Trust.

So take a stroll along Acklam Road this spring. What you find there will surprise and delight!

If you have ideas about how the council estate you live on could be improved using the Estate Improvement Budget, email:

Previously, the money has been used for everything from playground improvements and new bike storage to improve security.