We recently announced that we are delighted to have received South West Museum Development’s Green Grant scheme. This funding, which is generously provided through Arts Council England, will be essential in starting and developing a new project we have named “Greening the Museum”. It will have three key outcomes: the recreation of a World War Two “Dig for Victory” vegetable garden, the produce of which will be used in Crown’s Café; a wildflower garden; and the introduction of bird boxes and insect hotels.

This article will be the first in a series of blogs which will follow our progress as the project develops and the REME Museum becomes more ‘green’. We are currently very much at the beginning stages of the project: planning and preparing the areas for the vegetable garden and wildflower garden.

Grassy area with hedge perimeter next to the museum building. A section of the grass next to the pavement has been cut.

The area where we will be creating our vegetable and wildflower gardens, clearly there is much work to be done!

We envision a “Dig for Victory” garden that resembles as much as possible a vegetable patch that someone could have grown in their own back garden in World War II. We plan to build raised beds which can each have different plants growing, and when the vegetables are ready to harvest, they will help to make our café extra-locally sourced!

We hope that creating a wildflower garden will encourage insects and go some way in helping to maintain the populations of bees, butterflies and other insects that are crucial to the ecosystem. This is also why we plan to create bird boxes and bug hotels.

Pile of logs in a grassy area with trees, hedges and a hill in the background

One of our insect hotels (or should we say resort) has already been constructed with help from our neighbours at MOD Lyneham.

Throughout the project, we will be working with many partners who are helping in various ways. If you would like to help in any way, we welcome you to get in touch at [email protected].

We’re really excited to get this project started and can’t wait to tell you all about it, so watch this space for future updates.

Logos of South West Museum Development, Arts Council England and REME Museum

Lucy Brown, Museum Assistant