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24th Jun, 2022

Dementia-friendly garden project fully bloomed at Wellesbourne Allotments

Correspondent 27th Aug, 2019

A DEMENTIA-friendly plot has been unveiled at Wellesbourne Allotments.

The garden at the historic Kineton Road site includes sensory areas and a raised bed, and took more than 250 hours for volunteers to build and paint.

The plot was inspired by an allotment holder and supported by Heather Brown and Heidi Williams from the ‘Over 60s Community and Recreation Scheme’ or ‘Oscars’ which the garden is named after.

Ms Brown joined plot holders and Wellesbourne Allotments Association chair Ian Hope to officially open the plot.

She said: “The allotment garden will provide an outdoor space for enjoyment and recreation. It has been proved that being outdoors and connecting with nature has many benefits for people with dementia. Improving wellbeing and providing an opportunity for socialising which is equally important for carers.”

Mr Hope described how the project had brought the community together.

He added: “This has been a unique project which has galvanised so many people – from the generous financial support from companies, local organisations and the parish council through to the physical hard work of the ground levelling by a local landscape contractor and help from individuals, families and local firemen to lay slabs, build the sheds, erect and paint furnishings. We extend a heartfelt thank you to you all and we are delighted to hand it over to Oscars. We hope that many local people will benefit from this feature over the years.”

The opening also saw the unveiling of a plaque by parish council chair Anne Prior, which acknowledges the contribution of the allotments to the community – feeding people for nearly 200 years.

And it was recently featured on BBC show Countryfile which told the story of trade union pioneer Joseph Arch.

Plot holder Ken Manning traced the changing role of allotments – which were championed by Arch – over the last two centuries, and the contribution of Wellesbourne’s 180-year-old plots – currently under-threat from development – to the village.

The residents have been locked in a battle with landowner, the Diocese of Coventry, for around two years which has given rise to campaign group Save our Allotment Site.

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