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Leicester Teacher’s Dream Comes True

6th April 2009

A teacher’s plan to create a garden at a Leicester primary school has blossomed – just before she retires.

Sheila Pennington, who is retiring at Easter after working at Marriott Primary School in Marriott Road for 33 years, has wanted to convert a piece of waste ground in the school grounds into a garden for the 600 pupils for the past three years.

Her dreams were realised thanks to staff and pupils who have drawn up the plans and raised funds for the materials and plants as well as made scarecrows from recycled items.

Nineteen staff from Yorkshire Bank’s Financial Solutions Centre (FSC) in New Walk House, Leicester, then carried out the work over two days to create the Scarecrow Garden thanks to Leicestershire Cares, which organises voluntary opportunities for local businesses.

Sheila said it was fantastic to watch the derelict waste ground change into a green outdoor area where the pupils could learn about growing plants and food.

“We have planned the garden for so many years and it is wonderful to see it happen,” she said.

“The children designed the garden as a project and it has really changed this whole area.

“It will be used as a resource for the curriculum for science and healthy eating as well as an attractive outdoor space in the warmer weather.”

Graham Watts, partner at Yorkshire Bank’s FSC in Leicester, said staff had been really enthusiastic to create a garden that will be easily maintained and sustainable for many years to come.

“We cleared the area of brambles, weeds and bushes, prepared the ground to lay gravel, dug out a pathway, installed three benches, bamboo screening and a trellis and filled a number of tyres with compost for the pupils to grow plants.

“We also donated £150 towards the materials and one of the large plants has been called the Yorkshire Bank Tree by the school which is a lovely gesture.

“Staff were really enthusiastic about the whole project which was arranged through Business in the Community and Leicestershire Cares and it is part of our wider community social responsibility programme that runs at Yorkshire Bank FSC’s throughout the country.”

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