Wigan charity volunteers hope their garden will be 'blooming marvellous' for prestigious flower show

Green-fingered volunteers from a Wigan charity will showcase their work at one of the country’s top flower shows.
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Wigan and Leigh Hospice is one of five organisations working to design and produce a horticultural community hub for RHS Flower Show Tatton Park 2023.

Each group is working to create their own garden, with a message representing their community.

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Wigan and Leigh Hospice's gardener Jim Nicholson and volunteers with Lee Burkhill, known as the Ninja GardenerWigan and Leigh Hospice's gardener Jim Nicholson and volunteers with Lee Burkhill, known as the Ninja Gardener
Wigan and Leigh Hospice's gardener Jim Nicholson and volunteers with Lee Burkhill, known as the Ninja Gardener
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They will all include blue-themed sculptures and a custom hand-built blue chevron bench at the centre, to help represent the North West’s coast and skies.

The aim of gardens is to show how horticulture can empower communities and bring people together.

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) and BBC North West Tonight have teamed up with the organisations to create the garden for the flower show, which runs from Wednesday, July 19 to Sunday, July 23.

A team of dedicated volunteers maintain and grow the gardens at the Hindley-based hospice, bringing joy to patients, families and staff.

A team of volunteers look after the garden at Wigan and Leigh HospiceA team of volunteers look after the garden at Wigan and Leigh Hospice
A team of volunteers look after the garden at Wigan and Leigh Hospice
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Hospice gardener Jim Nicholson recently visited RHS Garden Bridgewater in Boothstown with volunteers to take part in a mentoring day, where they received guidance from the garden’s designer Lee Burkhill.

Jim said: “My volunteers and I are really excited about being involved in the Northern Star garden at the RHS Tatton Park Flower Show.

"We love working in the gardens here at the hospice, making them a place where patients and their friends and relatives can find some peace and quiet, at a time which can be very stressful. It is a privilege to be able to create that space.

“Whilst at a training day at RHS Bridgewater, we were shown the plans for the garden and met the other community groups involved. Lee Burkhill, aka the Ninja Gardener, has done a wonderful job at creating a show garden that reflects the ethos of each of the groups. The hospice’s garden will be one of peace and tranquillity and will be full of colour. We are very excited about planting it up and then showing it to the public.”

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Rochdale Mosque’s Amaani Initiative, Blackleach Allotments in Salford, Faiths 4 Change of Liverpool, and Myerscough College Gardens, which is part of Myerscough College in Lancashire, are also taking part.

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