A new community garden aimed at improving the physical and mental health of the local community is due to open in Skelmanthorpe at the weekend.

The Mast Jubilee Garden at Skelmanthorpe Family Doctors in Commercial Road, Skelmanthorpe, will be officially opened at noon on Saturday July 2.

The garden will provide a space for community groups, care home residents, school groups and individuals to go, get active and spend time outside.

The project received funding from NHS Properties and Locala as well as a winning a Dobbies Garden Centres ‘Help Your Community Grow’ grant.

Dr Louise James, clinical director for The Mast Primary Care Network (PCN) and a local GP, said: “I’m thrilled that this project is finally going to be available for our community to use.

“For the last year I’ve been working with NHS Properties and colleagues across the PCN to get it up and running. We had this space next to our GP practice that wasn’t being used and it seemed like a great opportunity to do something for our community.

“The last couple of years have been hard, and we know that a lot of people have felt isolated during the pandemic so this space will give them a place to go and spend time with others.

“Whether they’re referred by our social prescribing link workers or are part of a local community group, we want local people to feel that this garden belongs to them and is a space they can really make their own.

“I want to thank everyone who has been involved with getting the garden ready to open. The support we’ve received has been incredible.

“We couldn’t have done this without the backing of our community and, of course, the support and funding from NHS Properties, Locala and future support from Dobbies.”

Clr Musarrat Khan, Kirklees Council’s Cabinet member for health and social care, said: “I’m delighted to hear about the new community garden for residents in Skelmanthorpe and neighbouring villages.

“We know many people are still struggling with the impact of Covid-19 on their mental health and wellbeing and this new space will be hugely beneficial in tackling isolation, making new friends and also improving their physical wellbeing.

“Our dedicated social prescribing link workers work collaboratively with The Mast PCN and this partnership working is vital in making sure patients get the support they need to live well for longer.”

Those attending the official opening have the opportunity to plant some seeds and find out more about the garden. Refreshments will be served and there’ll be music and information stands.

The event is open to anyone from the local community and will be hosted by Dr James and PCN manager Julie Lambe.

The Mast Health Partnership is made up of: Skelmanthorpe Family Doctors, Dearne Valley Health Centre; Kirkburton Health Centre; Kirkheaton & Lepton Surgeries; and Shepley Health Centre.