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Veterans’ wellbeing boost: Renovating Surbiton care home’s garden

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Royal Star & Garter’s garden before work began

Work has begun on renovating the outdoor area and garden at Royal Star & Garter in Surbiton. The Home provides loving, compassionate care to veterans and their partners living with disability or dementia.


The project started in February and is expected to be finished before Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations this summer.


The renovation work is being supported with generous grants from The Monday Charitable Trust, ABF The Soldiers’ Charity and the B&Q Foundation.

Rosemary relaxing in the summer sun with her husband Bob

Work will see the current garden landscaped, making it more accessible for residents. Improvements will be made to the planting areas and raised beds to engage the veterans in gardening activities, and an outdoor dining and visiting area will also be created. New features will include a garden room which will operate as a hybrid space, hosting family visits and events, training and a place for staff to meet. The garden will also include additional pergolas and decking, a water feature, gazebo and benches and a wheelchair-friendly nature trail through a wild garden area.


Spending time in green space or bringing nature into your everyday life can benefit both mental and physical wellbeing. These include increased confidence and self-esteem and a reduction in feelings of stress and anger.[1]


Brigadier (Ret’d) Peter Monteith, Chief of Staff at ABF The Soldiers’ Charity, said: “Royal Star & Garter’s Homes are among the most highly rated in the country. As its brand states, this wonderful organisation has been providing ‘care with courage’ to armed forces veterans for over 100 years, including award-winning specialist dementia care. Our charity is honoured to support its work.”


A spokesperson for the Monday Charitable Trust said: “We are delighted to support this imaginative project for the garden which will give great pleasure to the residents and staff at Royal Star & Garter.”

Surbiton's garden in 2021

Paul Crisp, Trustee of the B&Q Foundation, said: “At the B&Q Foundation, we believe everyone needs a place to feel at home. So we’re putting our efforts behind local charities who share our vision – helping to create better, safer places for the people in our communities who need them most. Royal Star & Garter perfectly embodies these values and it gives us all at the Foundation great pleasure to support them.”


Home Manager Helena Maher commented: “Residents are really excited to see work starting in the garden. Once complete, they will have a beautiful area to spend time in, whether it’s enjoying the summer sun, gardening, watching the wildlife, relaxing, eating, or spending time with loved ones. Our Wellbeing Team are also looking forward to hosting lots of fun and engaging activities outdoors.”


Director of Supporter Engagement Caley Eldred said: “The benefits of spending time outdoors for mental and physical wellbeing is well known. Once completed, the refurbished gardens will provide an invaluable space for residents. We would like to thank The Monday Charitable Trust, ABF The Soldiers’ Charity and the B&Q Foundation for supporting this with their generous grants.”


Royal Star & Garter in Surbiton is welcoming new residents. For more information on this, or to work at the Home, go to



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