Garden grows stronger in Emsworth

Friends of a memorial garden in Emsworth have been gifted with a donation for new flowers, plants and tools.

Colleagues from Emsworth’s Co-operative Funeralcare branch in North Street visited the memorial garden this week to make a donation of £200.

Situated on the southeast corner of Emsworth Jubilee Recreation Ground off Horndean Road, Emsworth’s Memorial Garden was first opened in 2006 after a suggestion was made by a well known resident of Emsworth – Harold Groom.

Several members of the community subsequently campaigned for a public war memorial which covered World War I, World War II and other conflicts.

Friends of Emsworth Memorial Garden help to maintain the garden as well as a range of other activities including holding regular work sessions to maintain and develop the garden.

Volunteers are invited to join the regular maintenance session which is held on the second Monday of each month from 10am to 12pm.

Annie McKnight, Funeral Co-ordinator at the Emsworth branch – part of Southern Co-op, said: “This memorial garden provides a really essential space and is an important part of our community.

“Being part of a regional, independent co-operative, we do our best to support our local community and it is special when we get to support projects like this. We hope it will continue to provide a place of calm and reflection for many years to come.”

The purpose of the Emsworth Memorial Garden is to give people of all faiths, or none, a tranquil place for them to reflect in their own way and honour those local heroes who have given their lives in the cause of justice and peace.

It includes a Memorial Roll with the names of 234 Emsworth war dead engraved on plaques and a sculpture of ‘absence’ in its centre.

Maurice Clarke, from Friends of Emsworth Memorial Garden, said: “A service for all is held every year in the garden on Armistice Day – the 11th November at 11am.

“Everyone is invited to the service which is attended by local dignitaries, members of the Armed Forces, representatives of the emergency services, together with local schools and members of the public.”

To find out more about the Friends of Emsworth Memorial Garden, visit www.emsworthmemorialgarden.org.uk.

Southern Co-op’s community engagement programme ‘Love Your Neighbourhood’ addresses four key social themes for promoting: ‘Greener’, ‘Healthier’, ‘Safer’, and ‘More Inclusive’ neighbourhoods.

To find out more about Southern Co-op’s commitment to making a difference, click here.

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