The Unexpected Gardens programme invited local people to share ideas, make connections and inspire new ways of thinking about growing, whilst cultivating local roots and fresh connections among residents, growers, artists and community groups.
Unexpected Gardens were grown by the local community in partnership with Findhorn Bay Arts as part of Dandelion, the Scotland-wide creative growing initiative.
Participants living in lanes and closes off Forres High Street, were involved in a programme of growing events, advice sharing and edible plant giveaways. Participants regularly got together to share stories, songs and ideas for sustainable growing.
Free fortnightly and family-friendly crafting sessions open to the public hosted by members of the Cultivating Connections network, led by Moray-based artists Marion Normand and Oonagh Brady.
Pop Up Pots
Open to all fortnightly pop-up events on Forres High Street, offering free plants, seeds and advice for new and established growers.
An innovative floating edible garden on the Mosset Burn sponsored by Biomatrix Water Solutions which highlighted alternative approaches to land-based growing.
Musicians in Residence
Dopey Monkey responded to and created new work linked to the Unexpected Garden spaces. Musicians Danielle Price and Martin Lee Thomson originally hail from Moray.
Living Lanes Stories and Tour
Through conversations with lanes residents, poet and storyteller Margot Henderson to learn about the the secret history of the growing spaces and developed a walking tour celebrating the lanes participants.
Unexpected Gardens Portraits
Highlands-based photographer Alexander Williamson developed candid and collaborative portraits with members of the local growing community, while inviting them to share their inspiration for growing.
A day of diverse events celebrating growing and community networks in Forres, including a Pop Up Market, Cultivating Connections networking event, and an Unexpected Ceilidh featuring the Boatshed Band.
- Audience and volunteer attendances totalling over 1,000 people across a five month programme.
- Active community participation of 250 people through growing partnerships.
- 59 freelance creative professionals provided with opportunities for work.
- 8 local growing groups, makers and producers promoted and supported through commissions, networking and space hire.