A treat for all the senses opens in the grounds of St Catherine’s Hospice
A sensory garden which appeals to sight, sound, smell, touch and taste has been officially unveiled in the beautiful grounds of St Catherine’s Hospice.
The relaxing space – whose central feature is a beautifully restored vintage pergola – features pretty plants, flowers and herbs which touch all five senses. The area, designed around a Victorian English garden theme, also features a water fountain and bench seating where patients, their families, visitors and staff can sit and soak up the sights, sounds and smells.
The project was funded using grants generously donated by Global Renewables, Lancashire County Council and Lancashire Environmental Fund, who worked together with St Catherine’s Hospice staff to create and deliver the garden.
Several other organisations also volunteered their time, skills and materials to assist with the project, including Kiernan Construction, MHS Global, IJA, MJ Hulton, Bamber Bridge football club and Ribble Reclamation.
The idea was to create a tranquil space within the Lostock Hall hospice grounds where people – including patients, families, carers and the bereaved – can relax, unwind and get close to nature. Health benefits of the space for patients include reducing anxiety, aiding better sleep and lowering blood pressure, while the area also provides an informal space away from the main hospice where people can socialise, enjoy some contemplative time, or even have sessions with medical or social care staff.
Michelle Whalley, trusts and legacies officer at St Catherine’s Hospice who applied for the grants to fund the project, said she was thrilled with the outcome of the project, adding: “We have been overwhelmed with the support from local businesses and agencies who have worked so hard to help us create this beautiful space, which will benefit local people for many years to come.”
St Catherine’s Hospice day therapy patient Peter Fitzpatrick, from Preston, said he was looking forward to spending lots of time in the garden.
“It’s absolutely beautiful – such a tranquil spot. It’s perfect for visitors and staff, as well as patients.”
Geoff Harlick, commercial director of Waste 2 Resources, part of Global Renewables said: “Sweat, tears and laughter were shared by everyone who undertook the challenge to create the sensory garden at St Catherine’s which made it a truly memorable occasion and uplifting experience for all those concerned.”
Steve Edwards, from Lancashire County Council, added: “I really enjoyed working on this project as it’s in such a lovely setting.
“I’m really delighted with the outcome and to see the look on patients’ faces is just lovely. It’s such a peaceful area that lifts your spirits and you really get a positive vibe from the garden.”
Officially unveiling the new garden, Cliff Hughes, chairman of the board of trustees at St Catherine’s Hospice, praised all those who had played a part in creating such a wonderful addition to the hospice grounds.
He added: “I’m grateful to Global Renewables, Lancashire Environmental Fund, Lancashire County Council and all those who helped with the sensory garden.
“It will be a major boost for patients, families and their friends.”
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