Award-winning designer to launch new hospice garden

Categories: Care, Community Engagement, and Featured.

An award-winning garden designer is showcasing plans for a garden inspired by St Giles Hospice at a launch event later this month.

Karen Tatlow has created a community garden which will be entered in this year’s RHS Malvern Show in May, before it is then moved piece by piece to St Giles Hospice in Lichfield.

The garden, which will become a family space at the hospice, has already been fully designed and approved by St Giles. “Everything has been designed with a purpose – not only is there wheelchair access, there is room to take a bed into the garden and still accommodate family, friends and even pets,” explained Karen, of Karen Tatlow Garden Design in Lichfield.

“The design was very much about creating a space where families or the hospice community could come together to spend time and to ‘make memories’ as well as being an oasis of calm if needed” she said.

Last year Karen won three awards at the prestigious RHS Malvern Show, and she now plans to launch the garden at a special event to be held at St Giles Hospice on January 23.

“It will be a packed evening where people can find out how a show garden comes together, volunteer their time and find out how a financial pledge will help us create this wonderful garden,” she said.

“It’s also a great opportunity for any businesses to come along and find out more about how they can get involved, from sponsoring the garden to donating goods and staff time to the build of the garden at the show or back at the hospice.

“The sunflower is the emblem of the hospice movement and in recognition of this we are hoping to sell hundreds of metal sunflowers, which will create an art installation at the heart of the garden at the show. After the show people will be able to collect them to put in their own garden, or leave at St Giles for the garden there.

“These will be £20 each with half the proceeds going to St Giles and the rest to fund the building project,” she explained.

The designer is confident that entering the garden in the Malvern show will help raise the St Giles’ profile and also attract corporate backers from around the region.

“The show gets over 100,000 visitors as well as featuring on several television programmes – including Gardeners’ World – and in newspapers and magazines. It really is big news so a winning garden will certainly get a lot of publicity” Karen said.

Mike Lote from MJL Garden Design, who will be building the garden, said he hoped the garden would provide St Giles with a real ‘community hub’ which would provide happy, positive memories for people who visited it.

St Giles community engagement co-ordinator Jenni Fryer said the garden project was a wonderful way to highlight the accessibility of the hospice, as well as opening it up to the wider community.

“People can often be fearful of coming into a hospice, thinking it is going to be a dark, sad place, and this garden is a great way of showcasing to a huge audience what St Giles Hospice is all about,” she said.

“It’s wonderful to think that so many people will see a different view of hospices at the show and when the garden comes back to the hospice at Whittington.“

For more information visit St Giles Hospice