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I open the WWF Wildlife Garden in Woking

This week, I was honoured to cut the ribbon and officially open the new Wildlife Garden at The Living Planet Centre; the WWF’s headquarters down in Woking.

This building was opened in 2013 and is a ‘state of the art building with minimal environmental impact. ‘

I visited about two years ago to help with designs for a wildlife garden that could be used for visiting school parties as well as all the other families and individuals that visit the centre. There was a relatively small patch of land between the centre and the canal, with some nice mature trees. The area was pretty much derelict and looked very sad. Working with, Louise Moreton a teacher from Wicor Primary School in Fareham and Christiane Dorion, who works with us as an education consultant, we came up with a range of ideas that could be implemented to create an engaging space that was good for wildlife and would offer hands-on learning opportunities for education as well!

The garden has now been completed  by Twigs Landscape Design, and features an apothecary corner, a woodland area and a wetland. Situated right next to the diverse habitat of the historic Basingstoke Canal – the site also features specially commissioned community-built installations and beautiful planting schemes – created to attract a wide array of local wildlife. The Green Ambassadors from Wiccor Primary gave it a test run on Wednesday….

I was delighted to be able to open this finished garden and was joined by some pupils and staff from Wicor School, Mayor, Anne Murray and garden designer Richard Wanless. We cut the ribbon and officially opened this garden to schools and the public, before posing with the WWF panda of course!

Moving into the apothecary corner, the pupils and I planted some of the plants that they had grown and made sure they got their hands dirty!

We all had a truly wonderful afternoon and I know this resource will be very well used over the coming years with the thousands of school pupils who are lucky enough to visit this fantastic centre. My thanks to all the staff involved with this project at WWF who organised and made this lovely event happen. I look forward to returning in a couple of years to see it all mature!

P.S Richard said he will be out with his drill next week to make lots of lovely solitary bee holes in those lovely logs!!


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