Church planters bloom thanks to community engagement

Carpentry skills, community engagement and teamwork have helped build and plant two raised beds at St Cuthbert’s, Colburn, near Catterick.

Revd Andrew Cromarty (pictured with son Sim) had hoped to brighten the look of the church grounds since he arrived in 2014 and this summer two big flower beds were built from scratch and filled with flowers.

“Last September, we obtained the promise of majority-funding from the Garrison Area Partnership (through the Richmondshire District Council Grant Scheme), matched by a £200 donation in memory of a local resident, Gordon Bush, the uncle of our church warden, Marie Smalley,” Revd Andrew said.

“I finally obtained the wood at the start of lockdown, and with some help from my son, Sim, built and installed the two raised beds.

“Our new neighbour, in the bungalow adjacent, Chris Brown (the Catterick Garrison band master), helped me transfer topsoil and manure donated by David Wood, a local farmer.

“We now have a team of people watering them daily. We also planted some fuscias in pots by the front door of the church.

“I’ve since installed a couple of water butts, and a watering can, harvesting rainwater from the roof of St Cuthbert’s Community Hall.”

Revd Andrew said the church has received many positive comments from the local community:

“Many have been pleased to have had an excuse to stop and chat. We hoped to create a splash of colour, to cheer people up during these uncertain days of Covid-19; and, wonderfully, it has done exactly that.

“We intend to build on some volunteering work done by our men’s breakfast group, in developing a longer-term volunteer group to manage and develop the grounds of St Cuthbert’s.

“Our intention is to compete in CPRE North Yorkshire’s Best Churchyard Competition in May 2021.”

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