School garden a haven for wildlife

Dorset Echo: School garden in a class of its own School garden in a class of its own

A CHARMING Weymouth garden in a class of its own is open to visitors this weekend.

Holy Trinity School’s Environmental Garden is the only school garden in Dorset that has the prestige of being in the National Garden Scheme yellow book.

It is described as ‘a large school garden that surprises and inspires everyone who visits’ and a ‘haven for wildlife in a corner of urban Weymouth’.

It was started in 2008 following the donation of a winning RHS Show garden.

School governor Helen Toft said: “The award-winning ‘Edible Garden’ was designed by local garden designer Nick Williams-Ellis for Dorset Cereals and was created to show how a relatively small space could work as a productive and educational school garden.

“The donation of the show garden to the school was the start of a long project to develop the rest of the overgrown site to produce a stunning garden that entrances both the children who use it daily and the annual NGS visitors who come from far and wide.

“As well as the show garden there are many other areas of interest to see such as the bird garden, a large living willow classroom, a Second World War Anderson shelter, a large wildlife pond and much, much more.”

Dorset’s largest living willow classroom, which seats 30, is now well established, featuring a wooden throne for the teacher, and a recently installed composting toilet complements the garden.

The 19 children’s beds provide a riot of colour alongside the Hampton Court Show Garden’s oak vegetable beds.

Development is currently underway to provide a Jurassic Garden in a large shady area and visitors will be able to see the plans and the progress of the work Visiting youngsters can enjoy a butterfly hunt over the weekend.

The Cross Road garden is open from 1pm to 5pm on Saturday and Sunday and entry is £3.50 for adults and children will go free.

There is plenty of off road parking and refreshments are available.

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