Richard House Children's Hospice, London
We were delighted to be joined by children, families and supporters at the official opening of our latest garden project at London’s first children’s hospice, Richard House, on Thursday 27th June 2018.
Greenfingers Charity was joined by five-year old Myles along with parents Jerry and Myra at the grand opening. In the glorious sunshine, Myles, along with Dan Bowyer of Fisher Tomlin & Bowyer and charity Patron Ann-Marie Powell planted a magnolia tree to celebrate the “Let’s Explore” Garden, the 57th garden built by Greenfingers Charity in hospices across the UK.
The brief was to 'create a sensory garden which takes families on a journey through the woodland area, and for them to connect with different sensory elements of the garden.' It also needed to be wheelchair accessible. The once overgrown one-acre woodland has been completely transformed thanks to the vision and creativity of award-winning garden designers Andrew and Dan of Fisher Tomlin & Bowyer and landscape team from Kings Landscapes. Together they have created an enchanting accessible space in which life-limited children and their families can play and explore whilst enjoying the benefits of spending time outside and close to nature.
Children, families and care staff who spend time in the garden will now be able to enjoy an exciting woodland journey and experience many different elements along the way; from a secret hideout, chalk board for young artist’s expressions to an intricately laid labyrinth, an intriguing nest and the gentle sound of running water from the waterfall. This new garden really is a feast for all the senses. The entire garden is wheelchair-friendly meaning everyone can relish the chance to be outside.
This new garden also features some elements from The Greenfingers Charity Garden at RHS Chelsea Flower Show. Benches, a fabulous apple-shaped swing seat, soft furnishings and plants, including the recently launched Choisya Greenfingers are wonderful additions to the woodland.
Speaking about the new garden, Jo Inskip, Richard House’s Head of Communications said “You could see today the amazing effect the new garden had on our children and the staff. It really engages one's senses. A great place for our children to explore nature and a wonderfully calming place to relax. Perfect.”
Speaking at the opening, Greenfingers Charity Chairman John Ashley said: “The new garden at Richard House Children’s Hospice is just fabulous. It combines so many different elements that excite and stimulate, or relax and soothe. The continued generosity of our supporters means the world to not just ourselves, but to the life-limited children, like Myles, and the families that use Richard House Hospice every day. This magical new garden space provides a sanctuary of care and a place where families can create a million memories all of which would not be possible without the help of so many wonderful friends.”
Here are a couple of before and after pictures. You can find more pictures of the garden as it progressed and the opening here.