Fundraising underway for new garden at spinal centre

An artist's impression of the Stoke Mandeville Horatio's Garden
An artist's impression of the Stoke Mandeville Horatio's Garden
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Fundraising is underway to make a garden at the National Spinal Injuries Centre in Stoke Mandeville.

Charity Horatio’s Garden is working to bring gardens to all UK spinal injuries centres to enable young patients to have a relaxing outdoor space.

An artist's impression of the Stoke Mandeville Horatio Garden

An artist's impression of the Stoke Mandeville Horatio Garden

Horatio’s Garden was set up in memory of 17-year-old Horatio Chapple who died at the age of 17 when his group was attacked by a starving polar bear while on a school expedition in Norway.

Horatio wanted to be a doctor and had volunteered at his local spinal injury centre in Salisbury, Wiltshire.

The first Horatio’s Garden opened in 2012 at Salisbury Hospital.

The second is currently being built at the Scottish National Spinal Injuries Unit in Glasgow while gardener Joe Swift is currently designing a third garden for Stoke Mandeville Hospital.

Horatio’s mother Olivia Chapple said: “The designs that Joe has produced for the garden at Stoke Mandeville are amazing.

“The garden is designed to encourage play and will be a place full of fun for children and young people who are patients at the centre.”

Since the launch of a fundraising appeal for the Stoke Mandeville garden started in January, half of the appeal total of £950,000 had been raised.

The plan is for work to start on the garden in early 2017.

Mrs Chapple added: “At the moment, if patients want to go outside the car park is really the only place to go.

“The garden will be somewhere that patients can go regularly and it won’t feel like they are in a hospital.”

The charity is involved in maintaining the gardens and organising activities for patients.

To find out more visit www.horatiosgarden.org.uk.