London Borough of Croydon

Introduction to Food Flagship Borough

Growing food, learning to cook healthier food, and understanding the importance of a balanced, nutritious diet in preventing obesity are the principal aims of Croydon becoming a Food Flagship Borough.

The programme in Croydon will transform the local food environment by raising awareness about the importance of eating nutritious meals to tackle obesity and reduce health inequalities in the borough. For example, there is lots of information in the media about sugar and we are encouraging people to find out more about how sugar can affect their health.

WATCH our video below to see how we are working with residents across the borough to promote healthy eating and encourage food growing:

Croydon was awarded flagship status last year, along with Lambeth, following a commitment by the Mayor of London and the Department for Education to fund two pilot schemes using the findings of the School Food Plan. 

Our Flagship status enables us to play a leading role in improving London’s food system as a whole, by sharing the benefits learnt with other areas of the capital.

We want children and their families to know how to grow and cook healthy food, and that this is an affordable option for them. Activities will range from improving the food provision in schools, to working with businesses to pilot innovative community projects.

This work also complements our ongoing plans to help residents lead longer, healthier lives after being awarded Heart Town status by the British Heart Foundation in 2013. 

As a Food Flagship Borough, Croydon will:

  • Develop food businesses – provide support and opportunity to those groups and individuals who have innovative ideas for providing healthy food to their community
  • Provide community grants – support and give opportunities to those groups and individuals who have innovative ideas for growing and cooking healthy food
  • Instigate a child hunger project – work with families with young children at risk of food poverty to access healthy meals and improve parent cooking skills;
  • Encourage a whole-school approach to healthy eating – focus on breakfast clubs and lunchtimes and involve children in growing and cooking from reception onward
  • Promote community gardening projects – building communities’ capacity for growing and optimise the potential of new growing areas in Croydon

Councillor Louisa Woodley, Croydon’s cabinet member for families, health and social care says:

“The growing and eating of good, wholesome food is paramount in producing a healthy population.

“Flagship status will provide the opportunity to use food to transform our environment, improve health, tackle obesity and reduce inequalities in Croydon.

“It will support the commitments we already have in place to improve the health of Croydon residents, as a Heart Town, and through our Healthy Schools programme.”

More information

To find out more and how you can get involved with any of the Food Flagship projects, please contact: Ashley Gordon, Programme Manager:

Visit the Change 4 Life website for more information and support to make simple, healthy changes to your life


Ashley Brown

Job Title: 
Food flagship programme manager
020 8667 8416