Each week a group of up to fifteen neighbours make their way to their specially designed residents’ garden within the grounds of Nazareth Care Village, where retired adults live independently in a safe community setting.
Members of this group are dealing with ongoing challenges from old age and degenerative diseases, and yet, we have had many wonderful growing seasons in the garden since its construction in 2014.
The space was designed by Sophie Skinner, with a focus on accessibility; making the garden work for the gardeners. It was important that the entire space, both flower garden and vegetable polytunnel, be fully wheelchair accessible. Vegetable and flower beds are raised to hip height, with paving throughout keeping the paths sturdy underfoot in all weather.
The garden group sessions are tailored to be relaxing and enjoyable, rather than purely work based. Being in the fresh air and chatting with neighbours is more important than any garden task. All residents are encouraged to come along, even just to say hello and sit in the warmth of the polytunnel, sharing a cuppa during the all-important mid-way tea break.
An Open Day is organised by the gardeners each summer, raising funds for a now financially self-sufficient project. The residents have big plans for the new growing season and are eager to get busy in the garden again a]er their well-deserved winter break.