Leading ride-hailing app FREE NOW has joined forces with model and environmentalist Pixie Geldof, to mark the launch of its Green Pledge, by officially unveiling its pop up garden in a promise for a better future.
The wooden arches of the secret-garden style installation were dressed with a variety of flora and shrubbery, that were delivered by FREE NOW black cabs and PHVs, and stood out against the concrete backdrop of Hackney, East London, adding a temporary green space for residents to enjoy and connect with.
Sheltering under the secret garden away from the downpours, Pixie could be seen helping an A-team of master assemblers with the build of the arches, creating the final installation together and lending her support to the green movement.
After announcing this competition in late February, FREE NOW received more than 300 entries from people looking to win a mini green space for their local community. After the build with Pixie Geldof, FREE NOW delivered two green planters to the front doors of the first round of winners, Merium Guir of East Londonand Corinna Julnes of Columbia Road, London.
Meriem Guir said: “I initially saw the competition online and entered immediately as it sounded like such a wonderful initiative. The green prize is going to be welcomed in my area and we can’t wait to get it home. This will definitely be a pick-me-up and create a lovely space to enjoy.”
Corinna Julnes said: “I was really excited when I heard the news that I was to be shortlisted for the garden installation. I live in a tight knit housing community, but our gardens are lacking such plants and flowers. We often sit out in the shared space where the garden would go and it will create a little hub to bring the community together even more after lockdown, especially the single, older residents. I’m thrilled to have won!”
Research commissioned by FREE NOW shows that 93% of Brits think it would be beneficial for the people in their community to plant flowers and trees in the local area and 79% agree that having a shared green space brings a sense of community to an area; with this in mind FREE NOW will be curating and delivering a number of ultra-effective carbon-consuming micro-gardens to communities, nominated by the eco-conscious residents living in them.
Pixie Geldof said: “Sustainability and the environment is something I care deeply about. Seeing brands like FREE NOW make a real promise and commitment to do better by committing to make all taxis electric by 2024 is an important step. As a customer I can even choose to book an EV back cab on the FREE NOW app, so it starts with us too. Joining them with this unveiling to start the green movement is fantastic, because it’s giving something back to communities and helping people get back to basics, get out and enjoy nature!”
Plants are integral to nurturing our planet, cleaning the air we breathe; filtering the water we drink and providing habitat to much of the world’s expansive biodiversity. In addition to this, 67% of brits agreed that tending to plants in their homes and gardens helped to reduce stress and anxiety.
This installation build follows the recent announcement of FREE NOW’s Green Pledge and sustainability targets in January 2021. Across the UK, FREE NOW has committed to making all taxis electric by 2024 and all private hire vehicles by 2025, going further than the government’s sustainability targets and faster than any competitor to protect the environment and our planet.
Across Europe, the mobility platform will make all trips zero-emission in the meantime, while these goals are met, through preservation and regeneration of forests and planting more than 20,000 trees across European cities.
As part of it’s Green Pledge, FREE NOW will be working with drivers, passengers, regulators, government and businesses in the UK and investing over £20 million into supporting drivers switching to electric vehicles. Currently, FREE NOW is the only app where consumers can select an EV-only option and all non-EV trips are already carbon offset. FREE NOW is the first large player in the UK ride-hailing market to complete more than half its taxi trips in electric vehicles.
FREE NOW are offering consumers UK-wide a free packet of mixed seeds to start their own garden, simply by applying on the FREE NOW website. To redeem your seeds or be in with a chance to win a community micro-garden, simply enter the competition at https://free-now.com/uk/win-a-garden-for-your-community/