Green-fingered help for Bury St Edmunds charity’s dementia hub

Opening of a new outside area at Gatehouse in Bury St Edmunds which has been sponsored by Bury in Bloom.   Picture: MARK BULLIMORE PHOTOGRAPHY
Opening of a new outside area at Gatehouse in Bury St Edmunds which has been sponsored by Bury in Bloom. Picture: MARK BULLIMORE PHOTOGRAPHY
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Green-fingered enthusiasts have helped a Bury St Edmunds charity create a mini garden.

Bury in Bloom has donated an 18 foot bright blue planter to the Gatehouse Dementia Hub, in Dettingen Way.

Photo shows (l to r)  Kai Martin, 18, from Bury; Ben Cundy, 17, Elmswell; Siobhan White, 20, Haverhill; Jessica Gardner, 22, Lavenham; Luke Reilly team leader; Wendy Smith Paralympian; Charlotte Hughes, 20, Bury; Reece Coulson, 25

Photo shows (l to r) Kai Martin, 18, from Bury; Ben Cundy, 17, Elmswell; Siobhan White, 20, Haverhill; Jessica Gardner, 22, Lavenham; Luke Reilly team leader; Wendy Smith Paralympian; Charlotte Hughes, 20, Bury; Reece Coulson, 25

Meanwhile, a group of students on a Prince’s Trust course have helped to build the garden in the car park of the site.

The planter which is made from 100 precent recycled plastic was made by Realise Futures, a Suffolk based firm that supports and employs adults with disabilities and disadvantages.

Kieron Lingard, Realise Futures eco furniture manager, said: “It’s great to be part of this worthwhile project, our team have enjoyed making the planter.

“It is never going to need repainting or replacing, so it will be around a long time for people to enjoy.”

The planter was the brainchild of Bury in Bloom senior Green Fingers co-ordinator Sue Thompson who saw the positives of gardening in nursing homes and felt this would help benefit the clients of the hub.

Melanie Lesser, Bury in Bloom co-ordinator, was overjoyed with the results of the project.

She said: “Having the planter at the hub we feel provides the chance for gardening skills to be used there for all to enjoy, we feel this planter will be one of a kind.”

The sides of the planter will eventually feature artwork by the hub’s clients who will work with one of Bury in Bloom’s artists in a workshop.

The nine Prince’s Trust students worked on the garden as part of their 12-week course at West Suffolk College.

Luke Reilly, Prince’s Trust team leader, said it was ‘great’ to see the students interacting with the hub’s clients.

The students managed to raise £130 for the plants and garden decorations through a cake sale and by packing bags for shoppers at Tesco.

The Prince’s trust gives help and support to young people aged 13 to 30 get into jobs, education and training

Elaine Channen, dementia hub facilitator, said: “We have created a small piece of floral beauty in the middle of an industrial estate.

“Our clients will be able to enjoy the experience of being outdoors amongst the plants they have nutured.”

On the students’ work Ms Channon said: “They have been absolutely fantastic and its educated youngsters at the same time no to be scared. Our clients were even going outside to help them.”

Some of the students were presented with their certificates by Paralympian Wendy Smith, who competed for Team GB in Athens 2004 and went on to become a coach and mentor.