The photographs below, taken today, show how welcoming flowers can be to an area. The first shows the entrance to the now unused Lodge on the main drive. The second is a small area of the Civilian Garden of Remembrance.
We need to get in and do a bit of weeding….but generally it looks lovely and we must thank the BCC grounds maintenance team for the excellent job they have done in reducing the hedge height and keeping it in check for us.
On the morning of Saturday 8th September between 10am and 1pm the Friends will be taking part in Heritage Open Week.
Please come along and join us. We will have plenty of interesting items and displays and you can join one of our Grave Walks (numbers limited) highlighting the plight of ‘Labour Corps’ members who are buried and remembered in Brandwood End.
If you have any interesting memorabilia concerning the activities of local Suffragettes we would really love to see it !
Lucky for us, the sun shone today as a few of the Committee of FBEC wrestled with huge bags of bark to top dress the beds in The Civilian Garden of Remembrance!
A few weeds pulled, a bit of snipping here and there, some bark, a rake and a sweep ….and everything soon looked spick and span.
You can see a few more photo’s taken by Nicola Clarke from Idverde HERE
and the final result…………………
Despite agreeing that no serious hedge cutting would take place to our hedge surrounding the Civilian Garden of Remembrance (for ecological reasons), we had to give in- and do a slight top trim today as some of the uppermost shoots were stretching nearly a meter above the hedge itself!!
Before, with the stragglers standing proud!
Back under control below. We have made sure that the main body of the hedge remained undisturbed.
Julia, assisted by our youngest gardener…and an after view, looking much tidier.
Can we also report that our redesigned and replanted beds are now coming into their own and reflect a riot of colour and texture, whilst needing minimal attention. Mission accomplished !
Hedge uncut in this one ….. Beautiful texture filled beds
We all breathed a sigh of relief to see that the weather was dry this morning for the Friends to welcome over 20 people to the ‘official’ unveiling of our Civilian Garden of Remembrance. Our thanks to Councillor Eva Phillips who made a short speech about the uncertainties in the World today and the value of peace internationally. We all hope that we may see a time when there is no need for ‘civilian dead’ to be laid to rest following conflict.
Eva then cut the ribbon and declared that the garden refurbishment was now officially completed.
Our thanks to our anonymous donor, who meant that we were able to engage horticulturalist Darren Rudge with a team of his ‘Homebase’ students to complete the work. I am sure all our visitors today agree that the garden looks a picture!
Afterwards we all made our way to the Lodge and enjoyed a leisurely cup of tea and some excellent home made cake (thank you Coral!)
Well done Darren and his team!
We are still celebrating being awarded a ‘Silver Gilt’ medal by the RHS for Heart of England in Bloom! We now have the certificate and here is a photo of it in our hands as proof!
Yet again can we take the opportunity to thank Nicola for her suggestion that we enter, the RHS for including Cemetery entries this year and everyone that works so hard to keep Brandwood End looking at its best both ‘in bloom’ and also on more practical levels.
Those of you that follow our blog will know that back in June the Friends engaged ‘Darren Rudge Landscape Designs’ and some of his students to refresh and partly redesign the Civilian Garden of Remembrance flower beds. The beds had become overgrown and following a donation we were in a position to carry out work to reduce future day to day maintenance by our small team of volunteer gardeners. You will see from the photographs below that the results are magnificent, but we would like to invite you to join us at an official unveiling on Saturday September 24th at 10am, followed by tea and cake.
Gosh, such a frenzy of activity in the cemetery. We are sure the RHS and all our visitors will appreciate it! Gates mended, benches varnished, beds weeded, roses pruned, hedges cut, notice boards washed, section markers scrubbed, litter picked…….. but hey…..we actually do all of these things all the time- but not usually all at the same time. Well done to all our supporters and committee members for stepping up to the plate. Fingers crossed. Can we invite anyone who is interested in the visit of the Judges to Brandwood End to pop along and join us. We will be meeting them at 3pm by the Lodge, on Wednesday 27th July.
Sarah has spent two weekends re varnishing our two benches- so why not come along and sit on them!
As I am sure we have mentioned before, The Friends have been accepted as entrants into Heart of England in Bloom and will get a judges visit towards the end of this month. Whilst we are not able to affect much of the horticulture or upkeep of the cemetery we feel sure that Bereavement Service staff will be supporting our efforts.
There are a few things we can do, so the hard work in those areas has begun. Our thanks to one of our committee members, Sarah, who has started washing down some of the rain/mud spattered Section Markers. What a difference a bit of ‘Fairy’ makes!!
Before….and after !!
Our thanks also to Julia who has been popping in and out weeding under hedges and Barrie- who’s shears have been working overtime! All of these jobs and many more are undertaken continually by volunteer members of FBEC and the community, and happen as if by magic…..but we are making just a little bit of extra effort for this, our first, RHS entry!!
We hope you have noticed the difference we have made over the last 11 years and we thank all those that have offered their help.
The Friends offer lots of opportunities for members to take part in projects that inspire them, be it gardening ,war graves, social history, or trees, birds and wildlife. We are always keen to involve anyone with a skill they would like to share. Please e mail us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can we make a special appeal for someone to be responsible for keeping a digital archive of our activities. We know most of our activities are recorded on our Facebook page and within this blog but we would like to have everything kept in one place, and free time restricts the existing committee members from taking this on. Please can you help?
FBEC have been lucky enough to receive a donation from one of our members that has enabled us to revitalise the Civilian Garden of Remembrance in the Cemetery. Our main concern was that the beds had become over full and hard to maintain and that the quality of the soil needed improvement. The work was beyond our members abilities but we were able to engage ‘Rudge and Wood’ who are based at Winterbourne Botanical Gardens to undertake this project with some of their students.
It started like this…….and is nearly complete, so it looks like this…
It should be complete by the end of the week and we hope to hold an official unveiling in the near future so watch this space. Our thanks to Darren and his team and you can see more photographs of them at work on our facebook page.