Before last July, a patch of wasteland just off South Norwood High Street served only as a dumping ground for flytippers.

These days, the space is a thriving community garden, thanks to the efforts of volunteers from the South Norwood Tourist Board (SNTB), Crystal Palace Transition Town, and the surrounding area.

This radical transformation is why all those involved in creating South Norwoods's Sensible Garden have been nominated for Croydon Guardian's community awards. 

CROYDON CHAMPIONS 2015: Check out the categories of our community awards and fill in a nomination form

Jason Cooper, an associate of the SNTB, said: "We didn't want it to be one of those community projects took meetings and minutes. It's there for anyone to do what they want to it - as long as its not destructive.

"People said, 'You do know it will be trashed in two weeks'. But a year later it's still there.

"We get so many comments still from people saying they go past there thinking wow, that was such a good achievement."

The Sensible Garden was named after South Norwood stalwart and resident punk, Captain Sensible, and is complete with an orange bench dedicated to its namesake.

On July 26 the community celebrated the garden's first birthday with a shared picnic honouring the ethos of "no ownership".

Robert Gibson, another community figure involved in the project, said: "If anything the garden looks even more beautiful and is an oasis of colour for the people of South Norwood to enjoy. It has all been sustained by the time and care of volunteers."

For Mr Cooper, the project was a perfect example of how community spirit can get results.

He said: "The beauty of it is, there have been no leaders. No one is in control of it, it's just something to keep going and for people to do what they want."