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Green ‘gym’ combines workout with community work in Belsize Park

Volunteers celebrate Belsize and Adelaide Green Gym joining The Conservation Volunteers at Belsize Sensory Garden. 
Samir El-Ayoubi and Tony Kassab. Picture: Nigel Sutton Volunteers celebrate Belsize and Adelaide Green Gym joining The Conservation Volunteers at Belsize Sensory Garden. Samir El-Ayoubi and Tony Kassab. Picture: Nigel Sutton

Monday, June 2, 2014
4:28 PM

Energetic volunteers who combine good works with keep-fit sessions celebrated their achievements this week.

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Volunteers celebrate Belsize and Adelaide Green Gym joining The Conservation Volunteers at Belsize Sensory Garden. 
Team of American Scouts in London who are based at The American School in St John's Wood. Picture: Nigel SuttonVolunteers celebrate Belsize and Adelaide Green Gym joining The Conservation Volunteers at Belsize Sensory Garden. Team of American Scouts in London who are based at The American School in St John's Wood. Picture: Nigel Sutton

The Belsize and Adelaide Green Gym arranges three hours of hard graft every Sunday to give volunteers a workout while helping to improve community green spaces and nature reserves in and around Belsize Park.

On Sunday, the Green Gym marked its first birthday by inviting other community groups, including an American Scouts troop based in St John’s Wood, for tea and cake and to join in with a brief gardening session at the Belsize Sensory Garden, in Haverstock Hill, Belsize Park.

The project was set up last April by national charity The Conservation Volunteers (TCV) and has already attracted 140 members, who have so far devoted about 1,300 hours towards improving outdoor spaces in Belsize Park.

Laurence Clapdorp, TCV’s Camden Green Gym project officer, said: “It’s a way to do your bit for the community and environment, and at the same time keep fit. You can compare carrying tools to lifting weights, and the digging, shovelling and planting – quite a lot of these activities are good for burning calories and improving cardiovascular performance.

“In a way, you don’t really realise that you’re exercising – you don’t have the boredom factor of having to push yourself at a normal gym.”

Email BelsizeAdelaideGG@gmail.com for more information.

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