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Partnership Success at Tumbledown

Tumbledown has been successfully launched following the conclusion of a one-year partnership between Weymouth Town Council and Weymouth Area Development Trust.

The partnership between Weymouth Town Council and Weymouth Area Development Trust were the initial steps to deliver a community farm and create responsible stewardship over the natural environment that supports community life, learning and well-being in a sustainable and economic way.

Tumbledown Farm, a Weymouth Town Council asset, has been lying dormant waiting for the right moment and the right team to reawaken its potential. The partnership that emerged between Weymouth Town Council and Weymouth Area Development Trust in June 2020 was the opportunity to prepare a long-term plan to develop the site into a community asset with the aim of growing local food and working with community groups, vulnerable people, schools, colleges, and members of the public.

The Tumbledown vision is:

“An inclusive greenspace which nurtures the life-giving environment to support community led growing, learning and well-being, now and for future generations.”

Tumbledown will continue to evolve and an ambitious 5-year strategy sets out the route map to achieving its original aims. The Project Board is accountable for delivering the Business Plan and a Project Manager continues to lead its development from a strategic perspective. Weymouth Area Development Trust have brought their knowledge of working within the Weymouth community and extensive knowledge of creating a community approach to local food growing. Despite the challenges of refurbishing buildings and improving the entrance roads, fences, gates and general security, excellent progress has been achieved by the collective drive, skills and knowledge of Chris Wilson (Chief Executive of the Weymouth Area Development Trust) and our two organisations working together.

The partnership has highlighted the value of widening the participation of other key stakeholders in a new Reference Group, which subject to Full Council approval, will reflect the lessons learnt and amplify the key message that partnership working is the winning formula for Tumbledown, now and for future generations.

Chris Wilson, CEO of the Weymouth Area Development Trust (WADT), said:

“WADT is a resident led community organisation and we are committed to working in partnership in all our projects. The Tumbledown project has been great. The Town Council has had the vision of a new way of working to deliver what the community asked for. A truly community engaged green space that includes people, of all ages and provides that connection with the land. We wish the team at the Town Council all the very best and look forward to being part of the wider Reference Group and Friends of Tumbledown.”

Cllr Jon Orrell, Chair of the Project Board, said:

“Thanks are due to the Weymouth Area Development Trust for helping drive the project forward and inspiring us with different ideas on how to work together, and also for securing a grant and land management ideas.”

Clive Tuck, Tumbledown Project Manager, said:

“The Tumbledown partnership is great example of how two organisations can merge skills and expertise and accelerate progress in a short space of time. The legacy created by the Weymouth Area Development Trust working to support the Tumbledown Project will be the cornerstone of its long-term success. The continued involvement of Chris and her team in the Reference Group will continue to develop a wider partnership model that I hope continues to build the long-term vision that we all hope for.”

For further information regarding the Friends of Tumbledown or how to get involved, please contact Clive Tuck by emailing clivetuck@weymouthtowncouncil.gov.uk.