Blooming marvellous Banchory rose garden project set to start

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Seeds are being sown for work to start on project to turn a rose garden in Banchory into a community sensory outdoor space.

Following a £10,000 boost from the Tesco Bags of Help public vote in Autumn 2016, the Bellfield Rose Garden project is due to begin.

A local team of volunteers have been working alongside Aberdeenshire Council to develop plans to enhance the appearance and usage of the rose garden.

Situated by the Bellfield Group Practice, the underused land will soon spring into a new lease of life.

The removal of trees and the introduction of flower beds, play panels and an array of sensory plants will allow the garden to welcome regular volunteers to learn and practice gardening and outdoor skills.

Fiona Moore, local forest school teacher, explained the garden could be used to encourage the holistic development of children through a hands on approach to their environment.

She said: “The area can be used to offer the innate need we have to connect with nature and will have opportunities for free and natural play as well as organised and adult led activities.”

Project coordinator Isla Elliott added: “The garden redevelopment was set in motion to help engage the community with its local green spaces while improving a currently underused area.

“Not only will the garden offer a sensory experience it will host features such as a bug hotel, wormery and mud kitchen.”

The Bellfield Rose Garden was acquired by Crossreach in 1968 and gifted to the community in memory of Dr Stanley F. Lindsay and Dr John W. Park in 1975.

Since 1991 the maintenance of the garden has fallen to the hands of the Aberdeenshire Council, however a local community group, Bonnie Banchory, has a host of idea to revitalise the underused space into a recreational and learning space for the whole community.

There will be an information day in the garden on Saturday, April 8.

If anyone is interested in getting involved or supporting the project please contact Isla on numberonebanchory@gmail.com.