National Garden Scheme helps open fourth Horatio’s Garden at the Midland Centre for Spinal Injuries in Oswestry

Horatio’s Garden is one of the National Garden Scheme’s gardens and health charities – receiving funding for work which promotes the physical and mental health benefits of gardens and gardening. Since 2015 the Scheme has donated £255,000 to help the charity create and care for beautiful accessible gardens in NHS regional spinal injury centres. In spring 2019, the National Garden Scheme committed funding for the completion of all eleven gardens across the country and, on 22 September, our CEO, George Plumptre was delighted to attend the opening of the Horatio’s Garden at the Midland Centre for Spinal Injury in Oswestry.

The latest garden has been designed by award-winning garden designer and Radio 4 Gardeners’ Question Time panellist, Bunny Guinness, who attended the opening. In her speech, Bunny described how she created the original designs in collaboration with patients, families, and NHS staff and spoke of how wonderful it is to see the space being treasured by so many.

Research carried out by the charity shows that over 94% of patients say that having a Horatio’s Garden improves their sense of wellbeing. This supports the findings of the King’s Fund report, Gardens and health: Implications for policy and practice, that was commissioned by the National Garden Scheme and published in 2016 which aims to contribute to the understanding, assessment and development of the links between gardens, gardening and health and is the main catalyst for the National Garden Scheme’s ‘Gardens and Health‘ campaign.

“Seeing this beautifully designed space contributing to the health and wellbeing of patients is testament to our belief in the healing power or gardens and gardening. And we look forward to supporting the development of further Horatio’s Gardens and the continuing benefits that these gardens will deliver,” says National Garden Scheme CEO, George Plumptre.

Now that the garden is open, patients and their loved ones are welcome to visit whenever they wish. The design features a children’s play area and numerous cosy corners where families and friends can simply while away the hours in each other’s company. Patients will also have the opportunity to take part in gentle garden and art therapy sessions, while everyone can join in with the seasonal events that Horatio’s Garden will hold in the space throughout the year.

Thanking all those who had contributed to the funding and creation of the new garden, Horatio’s Garden Founder and Chair of Trustees, Dr Olivia Chapple, spoke fondly of the garden and said how happy she was to see patients, their families and friends enjoying the space.

For more on the National Garden Scheme’s partnership with Horatio’s Garden click here

For more on Gardens and Health click here

Grand Opening of Horatio’s Garden Oswestry

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