Horatio’s Garden Oswestry was officially opened in September by Sir Algernon Heber-Percy (pictured) to support spinal injury patients and their loved ones spending time in the Midland Centre for Spinal Injuries at The Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital.
The charity aspires to establish a Horatio’s Garden at each of the 11 spinal centres across the UK, with gardens currently open in Salisbury, Scotland and Stoke Mandeville. They also have projects planned for London and Cardiff, which are due to be complete by 2022.
Their latest garden has been designed by award-winning garden designer and Radio 4 Gardeners’ Question Time panellist, Bunny Guinness, who attended the opening. In her speech, Bunny described how she created the original designs in collaboration with patients, families, and NHS staff and spoke of how wonderful it is to now see the space being treasured by so many.
As the charity’s research illustrates that over 94 per cent of patients say that having a Horatio’s Garden improves their sense of wellbeing, the contribution of all those who have supported the project is absolutely invaluable.
Chair of the hospital’s Board of Directors, Frank Collins, described it as a “truly palpable project, which is testament to everyone sharing in its belief and vision”.
Now that the garden is open, patients and their loved ones are welcome to visit whenever they wish. The design features a children’s play area and numerous cosy corners where families and friends can simply while away the hours in each other’s familiar company. Patients will also have the opportunity to take part in the charity’s gentle garden and art therapy sessions, whilst everyone can join in with the seasonal events that Horatio’s Garden will hold in the space throughout the year.