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2019 RHS Hampton Court garden taking shape
Green-fingered young people involved in the council’s youth offending service will once again be joining forces with the council’s Dementia community support team to wow the judges at the 2019 RHS Hampton Court flower show.
For the past nine years, the council’s early help family support & youth offending service - along with support in recent years from the Dementia community support team – have entered the prestigious flower show as part of their community reparation. In total, the team has won 10 awards in the past nine shows:
· Four bronze awards
· Four silver awards
· Two silver-gilt awards
Working with partners and the two groups, this year’s submission is ‘The Therapeutic Garden’, which has been designed by Tony Wagstaff of the council’s early help, family support & youth offending service.
The young people involved complete this work as part of their community reparation, under the guidance of Mr Wagstaff. While showing drive and passion when delivering the project, they are able to work towards a City and Guild Level 1 in practical Horticulture skills, enabling them to apply their practical skills in the future.
People living with Dementia have also been able to assist with odd jobs and handiwork, such as painting, using hand tools, varnishing and planting seeds, also local volunteers of St. Lukes Community Garden (Cluniac Gardens), are supporting the garden this year with the growing of plants/flowers for the event.
John O’Loughlin, director of children’s services at Southend-on-Sea Borough Council, said: “Each year, the young offenders and the dementia community support team seem more determined than the last to show how talented we are here in Southend.
“The programme offers young offenders the opportunity to learn a new skill, gain a qualification, improve their own employability and also help those living with Dementia get out and about and give them something to focus on.
“All-round this is a fantastic event and it really tops it all off if, or should I say when, we win an award to accompany all the hard work put in by those involved. Please support the garden and vote when you can.”
Voting for the garden in the Small Show Garden category begins and ends throughout the duration of the show, namely Tuesday 2 July until Sunday 7 July 2019 You can vote for ‘The Therapeutic Garden’ by visiting RHS.org.uk and visiting RHS Hampton Court.
‘The Therapeutic Garden’ will shine a spotlight on the beneficial role that plants and gardening have in supporting people living with dementia, anxiety and other mental illnesses. With raised beds in the garden to make the design accessible for all, while bright and colourful planting lifts the visitor’s mood and attracts wildlife. The plants in the garden have been chosen for their health-enhancing effects and will see eucalyptus, thyme, and Eryngium included in the garden.