Veterans from Royal Star & Garter were among the guests attending the official opening of the Armed Forces Community Garden in Solihull.
The stunning open space in Hillfield Park, which is a collaboration between Solihull Council and Royal British Legion (Warwickshire & Birmingham branch), was officially opened during a ceremony on Friday 20 May.
Joining military personnel, local dignitaries, Monkspath Junior and Infant School, local choir and community groups were three residents from Royal Star & Garter in Solihull, and its Home Manager, Jamie Stubbs.
The charity provides loving, compassionate care to veterans and their partners living with disability or dementia.
The community garden consists of three zones – a community wildlife garden; summer meadow and community orchard; and community woodland.
The garden came about after Solihull Council and the local RBL branch identified the need for a place of rest and relaxation for Armed Forces personnel and their families, which could also be used by the local community. The whole project was designed, in cooperation with the military, to address specific needs whether they are physical or to aid mental health and wellbeing.
Kevin Dempsey, a Navy veteran, is part of the Wellbeing Team at Royal Star & Garter. He assists with residents’ outings and says the community garden will be well used by the Home: “This is a great asset for the community, and will be a great asset for Royal Star & Garter. It will be good for residents’ wellbeing, and I can see them getting lots of benefit from it for many years to come.”
And Home Manager Jamie Stubbs, who himself is an RAF veteran, said: “It’s a beautiful, peaceful oasis, and we’re very lucky to have such a wonderful facility on our doorstep. It’s going to be a popular place for outings and I know residents are looking forward to making the most of it.”
For more information about living at Royal Star & Garter in Solihull, and job vacancies at the Home, go to www.starandgarter.org/solihull