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Works starts on memorial garden at Hadleigh Nursing Home

hadleigh memorial garden 2021 1

Landscapers have started work on a memorial garden at Hadleigh Nursing Home which will be permanent tribute to townspeople who died in the pandemic.

Data has shown Hadleigh was one of the worst hit communities in the country for Covid deaths and its care homes were badly affected.

Hadleigh supermarket worker Jo Sheldrake, who has led a campaign for a memorial bench in the town, was asked to symbolically plant the first lavender plant in the garden on Monday morning.

The garden, intended as a quiet, reflective area for the whole community, will have a pergola with seating and tables as a central feature.

Trellis panels at the sides will allow roses and jasmine plants to climb and create a fragrant arch. From the pergola, people will be able to look out over a rockery and stone water feature.

There will be log seating with the inscriptions: “As we sit we Remember” and “Let the sun shine through”. Mrs Sheldrake, whose father Eric Mee was among the early victims of the pandemic, said: “I am sure the garden will be very much appreciated. People will love the setting and the peace and quiet.”

Jan Seal, manager at the Kingsley Healthcare run home, in Friars Road, said: “This memorial garden will bring to reality the wishes of my staff. “The height of the Covid pandemic was a really awful time. A lot of my staff are quite young and it was almost too much for them.

However, it brought us all together and made us stronger as a team.“We wanted to create a garden as a memorial for the whole town, not just our staff, residents and families.”

The garden will be officially opened in the early summer and the aim is to hold an annual remembrance event. Landscaper Danielle Homer, who runs Happy Homes Norfolk with Lauren Aldridge, said: “It is the first memorial garden we have designed and we are really pleased to be undertaking the project.”


Author: Stephen Pullinger

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