A MENTAL-HEALTH boosting gardening project is to begin taking applications for its allotments – after coronavirus put construction on hold.

The Growchapel allotment project will transform an area of derelict land between Abbotshall Avenue and Halgreen Avenue in Drumchapel.

Police officers based in the scheme brought the idea to the attention of councillors and Glasgow City Council back in 2018 after noticing a rise in mental health related requests for help in the area.

Now, almost three years later, applications have officially opened for those wishing to take charge of an allotment.

The approximately 6000m2 site will feature a number of allotment plots, a sensory Sitooterie space, orchard area and outdoor learning and social spaces.

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The first phase of development, which is to be completed next month, will bring beehives, pockets of wetlands, a composting toilet and 22 ground plots ranging from 75m2 to 150m2.

Bailie Malcolm Balfour, who helped bring the proposal to life, said: “This project is a great idea. The seed – if you will pardon the pun – was first planted a couple of years back when the then local police chief inspector contacted councillor Paul Carey and myself.”

He added: “We all agreed something that the residents of Drumchapel could interact with was the way forward.

“Not only does this project give that involvement, but the other benefits are fantastic as it will help with problems such as social isolation and mental health issues.

“My thanks go to all involved in this project as it will be a great asset to Drumchapel.”

Speaking at the time, Chief Inspector Morag Lister said officers were “delighted” to play a part in the allotments and tackling mental health issues in the area.

While Carey said it was a “project of great importance to the community”.

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He added: “This is something by the people of Drumchapel for the people of Drumchapel.

“It will make a real difference to the area.”

For more information on taking part in the scheme, contact growchapel@gmail.com.

The deadline for applications is July 5.