News and Projects that the Trust Has Funded
GRANT FOR GRANGE COURT GARDENS
Grange Court in Leominster has been welcoming local residents into its grounds to enjoy a range of activities, and its newly revitalised garden, all funded by the Kingspan Insulation Community Trust.
The former market hall is owned by the LARC Development Trust, a group of local businesses, public organisations and community members, who have transformed the seventeenth-century building into a community, enterprise and heritage hub. After the popularity of the previous year’s summer activity programme, the LARC successfully applied for funding from the Kingspan Insulation Community Trust to repeat and extend this project.
Part of the £1,607 grant was used to purchase new sports equipment and educational garden games, including small goal posts, a giant Connect-4 and swing ball sets. To further motivate the use of the equipment, the LARC hired an activity organiser for one day a week through the school holidays which culminated in a final sports day in the last week. The equipment will be available for any group to use throughout the year, encouraging local children to get involved with the Trust’s work and keep active.
The second part of their application for funding involved improving the grounds of Grange Court, to create a positive environment for both the local community and wildlife to enjoy. Angela Pendleton from the LARC Development Trust explains
“Once we started to make improvements to the gardens and began to work with the soil, it became apparent that it needed much more attention than originally anticipated. The building work had left the garden in a poor state with rubble, sub soil and a selection of pernicious weeds. The shape of the flower beds and wild corners also needed much improvement, with considerate planting in order to create a successful habitat for birds, amphibians and insects.”
The initial layout and design was carried out by Penny Usher, and then taken over by a voluntary organisation called The Grangers, headed up by Garden Designer Anne Smithells. A team of 6 people worked tirelessly every week to restore the inner garden with old fashioned roses, aromatic perennials such as Nepeta and Hissop, purchased with the grant money.
Angela Pendleton added:
“The space can now be enjoyed for refreshments and functions for the whole community and the plantings have all been tailored to encourage wildlife. Additionally, all the garden waste is composted so that the soil can be further improved. The front lawn has been redesigned to incorporate a large oak sundial, more trees and bulbs and woodland plants. The gardens now set off this very auspicious building, so that it can be heralded as an icon for Leominster.”
John Garbutt, Chairman of the Kingspan Insulation Community Trust, commented on the project:
“The Kingspan Insulation Community Trust members were impressed to see both the LARC Development Trust and the local community come together to support projects which encourage two of our fundamental aims: encouraging biodiversity and improving the health and fitness of young people through recreation.”