26th Oct, 2016

Pershore garden given top award

Rob George 30th May, 2015 Updated: 20th Oct, 2016

A PERSHORE couple are celebrating after a garden, designed for Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust’s Organ Donation Committee, was awarded a prestigious gold award

The Organ Donation Garden was admired by tens-of-thousands of visitors at the Royal Horticultural Society’s Malvern Spring Festival and was handed the top honour by judges.

The garden, designed by award winning landscape architect Ruth Gwynn and her husband Rupert Keys from Keyscape Gardens in Pershore, asked visitors to consider becoming an organ donor.

A team of volunteers assisted the Keyscape team to set up the garden and while it was on display, these and other volunteers, many of whom had received transplants or worked at the trust, were on hand to explain the reason behind the garden.

Volunteers gave out information about organ donation and why more donors are desperately needed as transplants depend entirely on the generosity of donors and their families who are willing to make this life-saving gift to others.

The Organ Donation Garden, which featured on BBC Two’s Gardeners’ World, promoted the choice of joining the register with two paths; one featuring joyous, uplifting planting to represent the positive choice of signing up and the other becoming increasingly closed and narrow.

Chair of the Organ Donation Committee, Michael Amies said “I am absolutely thrilled that the garden received this award.

“It’s all thanks to the hard work of everyone involved in its design and creation that we have received such a great opportunity to promote the importance of organ donation.

“After we were featured on Gardeners’ World, many visitors who had benefited from a transplant, or who knew someone who had, came to talk to us about their experiences.

“In every case they expressed their great gratitude to the families who had consented to this life-saving procedure being carried out.”

Sally Johnson, Director of Organ Donation and Transplantation at NHS Blood and Transplant said: “Well done to all those who made this garden a success.”

“This was a great opportunity to bring home the message of the desperate need for more people to donate their organs,” she added.

The garden was sponsored by the Organ Donation Committee, the Royal Horticultural Society, Keyscape Design and Construction Ltd, Ruth Gwynn, Readyhedge, Allen Fabrications and James Coles Nurseries.

Ruth and Rupert’s garden last year, designed to raise awareness of living with Parkinson’s, was given a silver-gilt flora award by the RHS judges.

Visit www.organdonation.nhs.uk to sign up to the organ donor register online, text SAVE to 84118 or call 0300 123 23 23 for more information.