Streets Ahead 2021: Finalists revealed for Glasgow community awards

IT IS almost time to announce the winners of our Streets Ahead awards for 2021.

Yesterday, we told you who was in the running for four of the seven hotly-contested categories – Best Clean Up Campaign, Glasgow City CouncilEnvironmental Initiative, People Make Glasgow Greener and Best Community Initiative.

Today, it is time to reveal the amazing finalists for the remaining three sections – Best Community Garden, Glasgow City Council Green Business and Best School.

The team behind GWLs garden in Bridgeton. Pic: Colin Mearns

The team behind GWL’s garden in Bridgeton. Pic: Colin Mearns

Our campaign celebrates community strength and diversity in every corner of Glasgow, supported by our partners Glasgow City Council, People Make Glasgow Greener, City Charitable Trust and City Building.

The tenth anniversary of the initiative promises to be the biggest and best yet.

The winners – including an overall champion from the winners of all of the categories – will be announced at a virtual event on June 23.

The finalists for Best Community Garden are Riversidehall Community Garden, G3 Growers and Glasgow Women’s Library.

Lisa Lawson of Dear Green Coffee. Photo by Jamie Simpson

Lisa Lawson of Dear Green Coffee. Photo by Jamie Simpson

Residents in Govan transformed an eyesore site into a beautiful growing space and Riversidehall Community Garden is now a much-loved hub on the city’s south side.

In addition to individual raised beds and children’s areas, it has a potting shed and polytunnel, and it has become a place for chat, relaxation and support, particularly in recent months.

G3 Growers in Finnieston has given local people – many of whom do not have their own gardens – the chance to connect with nature, learn new skills and meet their neighbours.

Last year alone, residents grew almost 500kg of organic fruit and vegetables from seed.

In the heart of urban Bridgeton, Glasgow Women’s Library has created a little green oasis, working in partnership with local schools and the Royal Horticultural Society.

As well as brightening up the city streets, it has inspired others and the team is now working with the railway station on introducing planters to the platforms.

In the running for the Glasgow City Council Green Business Award are Caledonian Driver Training, Dear Green Coffee and Zero Waste Market.

The team at Caledonian Driver Training on the south side of the city are well aware the drivers of the future may never drive anything but electric vehicles.

In addition to introducing three electric cars so far, its aim is to have a fully electric fleet within 10 years. For every one of its learner drivers who passes, the company plants a tree through Trees for Life.

Coffee roasting company Dear Green uses preloved machinery, recycles its waste products, runs a recovery and recycling programme for its packaging, and encourages staff to commute by public transport, bike, foot or carpool.

The east end firm takes its environmental responsibilities very seriously and founder Lisa Lawson also introduced the first disposable cup-free coffee festival in Glasgow.

Glasgow’s only plastic-free shop, Zero Waste Market is a greengrocer dedicated to helping customers buy as little or as much as they need.

Opened in Dennistoun with the help of a crowdfunder, Graham Sharp and Lizzie Loman have worked hard to support the local community, and further afield, by organising litter picks, planting trees for each online order, and partnering with suppliers and businesses close by.

Hoping to be named Best School are St Joseph’s Primary, Westercraigs Children’s Forest School Plans, St Roch’s Primary and Deaf School and Garrowhill Primary.

Pupils, staff and parents at St Joseph’s Primary in Woodside have worked hard to embed learning about sustainability and community at the heart of the curriculum.

Their work with a variety of organisations has included litter picks, pollution monitoring, cycle initiatives and more, and they also have big plans to create a wild garden and environmental learning space in school grounds.

Westercraigs Nursery children loved their forest school sessions in Alexandra Park so much they decided they wanted to create their own. With support from staff and Glasgow City Council, the nursery is transforming disused blaze pitches in Dennistoun into a green space for growing and play.

The whole community will benefit from a project which has caught the imagination of young and old, and will bring health and wellbeing benefits to residents for years to come.

St Roch’s Primary and Deaf School run a successful recycling shop, where staff and members of the community donate pre-loved items for others to use. This ingenious idea helps families access books, toys and clothes for free, and has encouraged recycling across the community.

Garrowhill Primary School pupils are concerned about environmental impact on the world’s bee population – so they have decided to do something about it on their own doorstep. The children learned all about beekeeping and signed up to keep a colony for a year. They recently decorated the hive too, and hope to inspire other schools to follow suit.

The Glasgow Times Streets Ahead campaign is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year.

If you are involved in a project which is helping to improve your community, we would love to hear about it. Get in touch by emailing

This content is brought to you in association with Glasgow City Council and City Building.