Marsh Farm Makeover

02 February 2017

Marsh Farm Makeover is a collective of residents in Luton who want to build a stronger sense of pride in their area, reduce fear of crime and make new friends.

Local people in Marsh Farm, Luton have been working together to transform two tunnels in their neighbourhood.

The tunnels link two parts of the estate separated by a large road without footpaths or accessible points to cross.

The residents began the project by holding a number of community meetings, where local people shared their ideas for how they could breathe new life into the estate.

Some people in the community were a little sceptical at first. There has been a number of projects in Marsh Farm that had not worked out as planned or had not come to fruition. But they found that as people could start to see the physical changes being made, more and more people got involved. The group now feel a sense of real optimism and resolve.

Lots of people from the Marsh Farm estate were involved in the clean-up of the first underpass, and the local fire brigade joined in with the second. From the beginning, the project has been created and shaped by residents – they came up with designs, helped with painting and even threw a launch party in celebration of the two refreshed tunnels.

Firemen cleaning out the tunnel for Marsh Farm Makeover

Marsh Farm, made over.

The aquarium tunnel, made over.

The group say that the changes they have made have helped create a real sense of community spirit. Many of the members have developed new friendships with people they didn’t know prior to the launch of the project.

One resident suggested she’d even like to have her 80th birthday party in the tunnel!

With four more underpass redesigns in the pipeline, the Marsh Farm makeover has only just begun.

Marsh Farm Makeover is funded by People’s Health Trust through its Active Communities programme, using money raised by HealthCourage through The Health Lottery.

 

To view a video tour of the tunnels and an interview with some local residents, click here.

To read about more great ideas funded by the Trust, click here.

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