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Overgrown area transformed to win Barchester in Bloom

Overgrown area transformed to win Barchester in Bloom
31st December 2010

An overgrown garden at Lucerne House in Alphington has been transformed into a therapeutic woodland walkway which won the title of best sensory garden in this year's Barchester in Bloom competition.

Mark Smith, activities supervisor at the centre, spoke of how people from the Prince's Trust and children from Alphington Primary School helped the staff to realise their innovative vision, reports the Exeter Express and Echo.

Despite wanting to make something of the area for a long time, the centre could not afford it until the Prince's Trust volunteered to clear the site for free, he explained.

A music area was created at the start of the walkway which is now used by a music therapist to help people with dementia and is decorated with about 500 different tiles painted by children from the local school.

"We had hanging baskets with strawberries in, which the residents could pick and eat - well, maybe not just the residents," Mark told the newspaper.

To add a whimsical touch to the garden, small animal statues have been placed around the area including a mole, rabbits, snails and hedgehogs.

In addition, there is a pond located at the end of the walkway and a bench which is inscribed with quotations including one that reads "if you rest, you rust".

Despite winning the Barchester in Bloom competition, staff at the care home are not taking it easy, with yet more work planned in order to create a beach and harbour area in the garden.

Find the nearest Barchester nursing home.