A big thank you to everyone who turned up to volunteer for our working party weekend on 6-7 April. We were lucky with the weather and managed to get a lot done in the time.
About 9 people turned up on Saturday and 3 on Sunday. Between us we sorted stones for building walls, primed and painted up some ironwork tree grills, filled in trenches for the power and water cables, did some potting on and watered seedlings.
We would like to say a BIG THANK YOU to everyone who came along this weekend to help us prepare the ground for the installation of a new electrical and water supply around the garden. Everyone worked really hard and did a fantastic job.
The work involved weeding, moving piles of rubble and digging away part of the big soil “mountain” in the south of the Walled Garden to clear a route close to the walls so that a digger can get through to make the required trenches. The soil from the mountain was then transported to the other end of the garden to help level out some of the uneven ground in what will become the “productive” quadrant.
Here are some photos of the volunteers from the Saturday afternoon and Sunday crews. If anyone has any photos from Saturday morning, do please send them in to email: firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can include as many volunteers as possible.
We are always ready to welcome new volunteers to this wonderful community gardening project in Torfaen. If you are interested in giving it a try, we are open every Monday during the day time and every Sunday morning 10.30 – 12.30. Visit our Volunteering page for more information.
The implementation of the Walled Garden design plan is moving ahead well. The central paving feature is almost complete but before we lay down the rest of the paths we need to lay in ducting for a new electricity and water supply. For this we need to clear a path around the inner perimeter of the Walled Garden. Can you help?
On Saturday 18th and Sunday 19th August we are planning a weekend working party to clear a way for us to get a digger on site to put trenches in for the new electric and water supplies. The clearance work will involve removing the spoil “mountain” by the south gate (see photo below) so there will be quite a lot of digging, lifting and barrowing required. We are hoping to find some strong, fit people to help us out. Many hands make light work!
We would also welcome volunteers to take on some lighter tasks such as keeping a regular flow of refreshments available for the grafters and hoeing out the spoil.
The working parties will run from 10.00 – 13.00 hrs and 13.00 – 16.00 hrs Sat and Sun. Please contact us on email@example.com if you would like to come along. You will need to bring suitable footwear with covered toes (no sandals), sunscreen and a hat if the weather is sunny. Free refreshments will be provided.
The first public meeting of the Friends of Llanfrechfa Grange Walled Garden was held on Thursday 8 December in the Main Hall at Llanfrechfa Grange. The meeting provided an opportunity to share some of our key achievements over the last year and to start recruiting members to support the charitable aims of the project. Further details of the project is available in our first year report, launched at the meeting, which includes a statement of our financial position.
A key achievement was of course, winning a Tesco Community Award to install a large greenhouse and shed for horticultural therapy. We were pleased to also be able to announce the beginning of our new partnership project with ‘Growing Space‘, which will mean that from early next year, horticultural therapy will be provided to a small group of people with Autistic Spectrum Disorder, helping them develop new skills and potentially pathways into work. In the future, we hope to be able to extend this to other groups.
Members of Mencap Cymru were also at the meeting to promote their ‘Hidden Now Heard’ project which is currently focusing on the experiences of people with Learning Disability and those who used to live or work at Llanfrechfa Grange.
We were delighted to be able to raise £200 at the meeting which came from the recruitment of over 20 new members and a raffle, which had a fabulous Walled Garden cake, made by Wendy Warren, as its first prize. Thank you to every one who took part.
A little earlier in the day, the Chairman, David Jenkins, and Chief Executive, Judith Paget, of Aneurin Bevan University Health Board, hosted a special thank you celebration for our current volunteers and supporters. As we were blessed with a fine sunny day, everyone was able to gather together in the Walled Garden with a cup of hot mulled apple juice to hear Judith express her thanks and appreciation for all the hard work put in by volunteers from all walks of life. Judith said she was delighted and amazed to see how much progress had been made and to see the garden come back into use, in a way which, with the coming of the new hospital, created a link between past and future. Judith and the Chairman then joined the volunteers for tea and cake in the Main Hall, where they chatted further with individuals.
Our ability to redevelop and maintain the garden for the future is dependent on our supporters and funds to buy materials and equipment. For more information on how you can get involved or provide funding support, please visit our Supporting Us page.
We are delighted to announce that Aneurin Bevan University Health Board (ABUHB) has been successful in securing the Health Standards highest award thanks in part to the support of the Llanfrechfa Grange Walled Garden project.
The Corporate Health Standard is the national mark of quality for health and wellbeing in the work place. The standard is designed to promote a continuous journey of good practice and improvement and can be used by organisations to improve the health and wellbeing of their employees.
At platinum level ABUHB has demonstrated its commitment to supporting not only their employees, but other organisations and the local community. This involves a range of activities including the promotion of partnership working, sharing knowledge and promoting community engagement.
On Thursday 10th December ABUHB hosted the Welsh Government assessors at the Serennu Children’s Centre in Newport and were delighted to be able to include the Walled Garden Project as one of its showcase projects for the assessment day. This project is a great example of how community engagement can provide benefits for everyone involved. By making the garden available to the community and supporting the community to shape and run the garden for the benefit of the local community it has the potential to be so much more than just a garden managed within a hospital site.
The project team leading the Platinum application would like to thank everyone involved in the walled garden for their support in demonstrating the value of working together.