Spruce up for sensory garden

Garden: The family of Patrick Keane and, below, the official opening in 1953

Garden: The family of Patrick Keane and, below, the official opening in 1953

The official opening of a garden at Chorley’s Astley Park was re-enacted as it was given a new lease of life.

A new sensory garden has been created on the site of what was once known as the blind garden, located off the path leading to and from the Queens Road entrance.

It was first created in 1953 for blind servicemen from the war to use, before being replanted as a commemoration to Patrick Keane, Mayor of Chorley in 1975-1976.

After falling into disrepair, the area has now been transformed.

Mr Keane’s family attended the official opening on Wednesday, when they re-enacted a photograph of the previous opening.

The new sensory garden, created by Chorley Council in partnership with the Friends of Astley Park, is designed to have year-round colour and interest as well as being attractive to wildlife.

Volunteers from the Friends of Astley Park and Galloway’s Society for the Blind helped to plant the garden, weed it, spread bark chip and install braille plant labels.

Craftsman Jack Ashurst, from Adlington Dry Stone Walling, rebuilt the stone walls, created French oak benches and installed stone plaques depicting the history of the garden.

Sculptor Thompson Dagnall designed oak carved benches and a mole, and interpretation boards were added telling visitors about the history of the site, the senses and planting.

Coun Bev Murray, who has responsibility for parks and open spaces at the council, said: “We are delighted that the sensory garden in Astley Park is now open for everyone to enjoy. It looks, feels and smells fantastic and has been an excellent community project to be involved in.

“The garden has been completely revamped and the new additions will enable visitors to appreciate and enjoy this section of Astley Park.”




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