Welcome to the Friends of Duncan Terrace and Colebrooke Row Gardens 🌱

Who are we?

A group of volunteers – local residents and Park Users who live and work in the Borough. All with a shared passion for supporting nature and making Duncan Terrace and Colebrooke Row Gardens a special place for people to enjoy. The Gardens are a green oasis where we can relax, be outdoors and close to nature and together, we can build a healthy and sustainable future for the Gardens, its communities and Us!

The Gardens

Duncan Terrace Garden [Railed] is a long, linear woodland garden with two wider, sunnier aspects at either end. It is a beautiful Spring garden that sustains itself well into the summer and beyond into autumn and winter. The aim in this Garden is to protect the woodland habitat whilst creating and enhancing open sunny areas to support biodiversity, habitat and amenity goals.

Colebrooke Row Garden [Railed] is an immediately adjacent linear garden, with a generally sunnier aspect along its length. A supremely beautiful spring garden, it has a strong mid-summer look and is managed in a similar way.

Colebrooke Row Garden [Unrailed]: is a short steep bank, recently planted with perennial & drought-tolerant evergreen shrubs and flowering trees. The planting choice reflects ongoing climate change and biodiversity loss; and aims to create a continuing wildlife corridor throughout the Gardens to the north.

Colebrooke Row Garden: The Bank is a longer open stretch continuing along Colebrooke Row, again providing habitat,  pollinator-friendly planting, offering food sources and habitat throughout the year.

What are we doing?

We maintain the Gardens in a sustainable way, supporting biodiversity through a process of ongoing natural habitat creation and maintenance, climate-sensitive planting, good water management, and increasing the sources of pollen, nectar and berries for wildlife throughout the seasons.

As we work actively to support sustainability and counter biodiversity loss, the Gardens are now also home to some different sorts of homes – Eco Towers, Pillar Habitats and Bee Posts, all designed to offer habitat and protection for multiple different species of insects, and birds.

These homes allow birds to breed safely, and become future pollinators. The group is currently working on more projects that will ensure insects and birds have a safe place to thrive.

The Gardens are pesticides free.


As a borough, Islington has the least green space in the country per head of population. The Gardens are situated right behind the Angel City Centre and are a vital resource for people who live, work and study in and around the area.  They follow the path of the New River and consist of multiple, distinct areas or zones, each with its own character, habitat and aspect.  The Gardens are both natural and managed, acknowledging the impact of climate change and biodiversity loss – kept in balance to allow us to protect, restore and build habitat; to create a space where biodiversity thrives and pollinators flourish, and fundamentally to build a place where people want to be. They are cared for by a partnership between the Friends Group and Islington Parks.

Our objectives

  • To support the ongoing development of the Gardens in ways that:
  • Are ecologically resilient, responding to climate change [better water management; increased use of mulch & barks; planting schemes that sustain biodiversity, are drought tolerant and provide good habitat]
  • Recognise the importance of building wildlife corridors, connecting spaces within an urban environment
  • Support pollinators by increased planting of nectar-producing plants, larval food plants, breeding grounds and habitat; and that also extend the flowering season
  • Build relationships between local people and with wider community partners, supporting volunteering and achieving strong community engagement and cohesion
  • Working with specialist groups such as Young Wilders, the Butterfly Trust, Green Earth Habitats. These organisations help us to meet our ecological and biodiversity goals and to help us build the best space we can.

Our partners:

We strongly believe in the power of community and partnership. We are working closely with Green Earth Habitats and Young Wilders to support our ability to build back our bird, insect and pollinator populations whilst also providing a beautiful place to be. Lots of exciting projects are on the way, so keep an eye on the website and the Gardens!

Islington Parks are a critical key partner. City, University of London and St Peter’s ward councillors are also vital supporters of our work here in the Gardens, as are many local businesses and third sector supporters like Employee Volunteering.

We are lucky enough to partner annually with the Metropolitan Public Gardens Association through initiatives like Bulbs for London. We recently planted 1000 Spring bulbs, which will bring wonderful colour to the borders in February March, April and even through til May!

Get involved:

You can find our Community Garden Days listed under Gardening Events; they are also listed on the gates of the Gardens. We look forward to seeing you on any of those days. The Garden Blog page will keep you up-to-date with the latest news from the Gardens!

Come visit us!