Published on: Monday 11 May 2015 at 15:01
To coincide with National Gardening Week, special guests joined staff, volunteers, patients and visitors to watch the ribbon cutting in the spring sunshine on Thursday, April 16.
The previously forlorn-looking outdoor space adjacent to the Inpatient Unit has been transformed into a tranquil oasis for patients and their loved ones to enjoy after the Hastingwood-based Hospice won a £50,000 grant from the Big Lottery Fund as part of the People’s Millions competition in conjunction with ITV.
The garden, which was designed by Stansted landscape architects Liz Lake Associates and developed by Harlow landscapers The Whitelaw Brothers, features a soothing water feature, raised beds and year-round planting that will enhance its natural beauty. The garden is also wheelchair-friendly and staff are able to bring patients out into the fresh air in their beds.
Christine, who is best known as the resident gardening expert on the BBC’s The One Show, said: “One of the things our patients and visitors tell us again and again when they come to St Clare is how much they appreciate having access to the Hospice’s beautifully maintained grounds, and as a horticulturalist I know gardens have many therapeutic benefits as well as being physically and emotionally restorative.
“So it was a great pleasure to be invited to officially unveil the new ‘Space to Breathe’ garden, which has many lovely features that maximise the healing power of nature, and provides a peaceful, calming and secluded haven for our patients and their families to spend quality time together and make memories they will always treasure.”