It’s been a little while since our last blog post. As you can imagine, the start of the summer holidays has meant we’ve been enjoying the buzz at the Park – even in the rain! We hope you’re enjoying your visits and seeing how the almost daily changes to our new build are taking shape.
Our highlight since we last posted has to be the opening of our Sensory Cottage Garden! The completion of Phase 1 of our project has created a special addition to our Park and a dedicated space which encourages visitors, whether through recreation or education, to excitingly explore using different senses such as sight, smell and sound in such a tranquil setting.
The Friends of Lepe have worked hard at Lepe Point, the Park’s local nature reserve, to clear the site of old vegetation to make way for a new garden on the site of the former Solent Cottage garden. The new garden has been designed primarily for disabled people, schools and community organisations. It’s features include a bug hotel, a pond and water feature, bog garden, a wildflower garden and a pergola for climbing plants. A variety of different paths take visitors around so they can enjoy the abundance of flowers such as lavender, hydrangeas, azaleas and petunias.
There are many thanks owed to everyone who has helped in the garden’s creation since work began early last year, with donations of money from the Friends of Lepe, Waitrose, Philip Fawkes, Exxon Mobil and the Postcode Lottery Trust as well as a donations of equipment, expertise and volunteer time - we’ve lost count of the number of hours!
Finally a huge thank you to Mrs Gilly Drummond OBE DL who opened the Sensory Cottage Garden for us in July.
Now that Phase 1 has been completed, work starts in earnest on Phase 2 in September, towards the back of the site. It’s here we hope to add more sensory features, planting and raised beds ready for opening next summer – watch this space! For anyone wishing to make donations in any shape or form, please get in touch with the team at the Park office on 02380 899108.
To find the Sensory Cottage Garden, head to the entrance to the cliff top car park – safely cross the road to Lepe Point, turn left and follow the path to the entrance and enjoy!