PLANS: Leonsdale councillor Franchesca Walker

The property, situated along Norwood Road, is a well-known dumping hotspot and is often at the centre of gun battles between the Bad Boys and The Terribles gangs.

However, in recent weeks residents, along with ward councillor Franchesca Walker, have been clearing the area in the hopes of creating a community garden.

The garden, which is set to be launched on Mandela Day on 18 July, is set to comprise of murals, plants and benches.

“Everybody knows what happens on this corner and we have seen enough death and enough dirt. The community is now ready to come together to create a calm, tranquil space where they can enjoy their own neighbourhood and displace the criminals,” says Walker.

Resident Bernita Dykers told the Daily Voice she is fed-up with the dumping, saying the area was recently cleaned.

“For us who live here it is our children that get sick from all the germs and stuff from that place. We are for the garden and we have told the councillor that we will look after it for the community,” she says.

Elsies River Community Police Forum (CPF) spokesperson, Imraahn Mukaddam, says they support the initiative.

“Currently we see at least one shooting per week as they fight along Norwood Road. We support the garden initiative and what may be nice is a memorial for all those innocent people who have died in these shootings,” he says.

Walker and residents are now appealing for donations to get the garden going. If you would like to assist, call Walker on 073 337 4407.