Children's hospital garden project blossoms

A new sensory garden at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Alder Park in Liverpool has been officially opened by Redrow’s health and safety mascot Buster Bear.

A group of apprentices employed by the housebuilder transformed an outdoor area of the hospital’s Alder Park off site unit to provide young patients with mental health issues with somewhere to relax and enjoy themselves in a peaceful setting.

The sensory garden includes a bird bath, bird table, shrubs, plants, wind chimes and walkways.

Team member Rebecca Hornbuckle, a sales office assistant at Redrow’s Lancashire headquarters in Chorley, said: “Creating the sensory garden was a real team effort. The project brought Redrow’s company mantra Our Pride ~ You Joy to life as we all worked really hard for the benefit of patients. We’re delighted with the end result and hope that the children will enjoy spending time in the garden.”

The apprentices created the sensory garden with the help and supervision from experts. The work including digging out existing plants and shrubs and replacing them with new ones and laying gravel to create walkways.

The apprentices were joined by representatives of businesses who helped with the project, hospital staff and patients, and Oli Alder Hey’s new mascot as Redrow’s health and safety mascot Buster the Bear officially opened the sensory garden.

Clare White, director of Alder Hey Children’s Charity said: “We’re extremely grateful to the Redrow team for their support. It’s fantastic to see how well they’ve transformed this unused area in Alder Park into a sensory garden to provide a recreational space that will be used therapeutically by patients and their families. We’re delighted that Redrow have chosen to support our charity in a variety of ways and look forward to working with them.”

Patients have already started to benefit from the new garden with dance therapy classes taking place in the space.

The Redrow apprentices organised the voluntary community project as part of the Brathay Challenge 2013 – the official search for apprentice team of the year which is organised by the Brathay Trust and supported by the National Apprenticeship Service

The project funds for the team were originally £250 but they received donations of goods and services from suppliers including Keyline Supplies, BRK Landscaping, SMP Playgrounds, James Chadwick & Sons LTD, Inspired Landscapes, Speedy Services, WPI Civil Engineering, CW Berrys, Newhall Landscapes, Ringwood Fencing and Tim Fellows Landscapes.

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Redrow Homes is one of the UK’s leading house builders, operating across England and Wales, with a strong emphasis on high quality family housing in prime locations. Its New Heritage Collection of family homes combines traditional looking, ‘Arts & Crafts’ influenced exteriors with bright, modern, high specification interiors. Established more than 35 years, the company has won numerous awards over the years. Redrow received a 5* Award in the Home Builder Federation (HBF) annual customer satisfaction survey in 2011, 2012 and 2013; collected the Silver award in the Large Housebuilder category of the 2012 What House? awards; and its ‘Share a little bit of joy’ campaign was named best marketing initiative at the 2012 Housebuilder Awards.  Web: