London and Cheshire based Landscape Architects Adam White and Andrée Davies were delighted that Mark Owen and his lovely wife Emma found time to join them for the grand opening of their latest project, a new children’s garden at St George’s Hospital in south west London.
Mark said “Wow, this is magical. What a great place for the children to come and enjoy at St George's Hospital. Well done to Adam and Andrée, the team at St George’s and course all the children. Thank you for inviting us along to be part of this special day”
The garden was looking resplendent after a week’s worth of April showers and thankfully the rain held off and sun chose to shine for the opening. As the Owens arrived children, parents and staff gave them a warm welcome. Adam gave Mark and Emma a tour of the garden and introduced them to the
garden’s new resident rabbits, Howard and Jason and the friendly dragon called Owen carved by North Wales based chainsaw artist Simon O'Rourke.
Mark said “I spoke to the real Howard and Jason earlier in the week and told them the garden has two rabbits named after them, they both thought it was hilarious.” He added, “all the lads think this is a great project and that’s why on behalf of the Take That Trust I’d like to present the hospital with this cheque for £20,000” after a round of applause he continued “that should buy plenty of carrots for the rabbits”. Adam then introduced Mark to Simon and of course Owen the Friendly Dragon, Mark commented “this is fabulous, it’s looks amazing”.
Davies White Landscape Architects have donated the rabbits to the garden and arranged for their health care, which includes Channel 5 TV vet Zara Bowland joining the children and staff at the hospital to talk about how best to look after pet rabbits. Simon has also donated a tree carving of Gary Barlow that will soon make it’s arrival in the garden leaving only Robbie to join at some point.
The garden incorporates ideas and features suggested by the children, including a vegetable patch, animal enclosure, swings, water pump, stepping stones, hammock, basket ball hoop and willow wigwam and tunnel.
The garden was officially opened when Mark cut the ribbon to release huge bunch of balloons into the sky and then cut a massive cake made to look like the garden. Sadiq Khan, MP for Tooting joined in with the celebrations thanking the team at St George’s Hospital, the children, Davies White and of course the Owens for giving up their time. Other activities that took place included willow weaving with Sharon Potter and magic and fun with local children’s entertainer Smarty Arty.
Sue, mother of Thomas aged 7 said "the garden is beautiful, a real little oasis. Tom was really nervous about visiting the hospital for ongoing treatment. The garden is now his little treat each time we visit. A massive thank you all round".
Adam said “It’s been a pleasure to work on this project and see so many happy children. It’s great they now have a place they can call their own and place to escape to when staying or visiting the hospital”
To see more pictures of the garden and photos from the opening event simply visit the Davies White website www.davieswhite.co.uk and for more images and information about Wrexham based Tree Carver, Simon O’Rourke visit www.treecarving.co.uk
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