Relationship blossoms at Garden to honour war heroes

A renowned tourist attraction is working with people with learning disabilities to help commemorate the anniversary of the First World War.

The Alnwick Garden is developing a relationship with the town’s Pottergate Centre, due to collaboration between the attraction and members of Northumberland Echo, a learning disability partnership board forum in the north of the county.

Stacey Howe, who represents other young adults with learning disabilities on the forum, came up with an idea to hold a fund-raising event in the Garden, which will take place during the weekend of August 23 and 24.

Chefs from the Garden’s Ministry of Food kitchen will be working with the Pottergate Pantry to produce a range of poppy-themed biscuits and cupcakes which will be sold over the weekend.

The Pantry is a successful social enterprise established by the Pottergate Centre, which provides all the meals for the Howling Lane-based venue, frozen meals for sale and a buffet service.

Some of the adults from local disability groups will be helping children from the visiting general public to decorate their own biscuits and cakes too, as part of the commemorations.

Local drumming band Rhythm Stix, made up of people from the Pottergate Centre, will perform and it is hoped that other community choirs, school choirs and buskers might also like to volunteer to perform First World War-themed songs.

The Garden will be launching a First World War in Northumberland poster design competition for children, schools and community groups, giving them the opportunity to win an annual pass for their family, school or group.

The proceeds of the cake sale and other special activities will be donated to SSAFA – an armed forces charities that provides practical support and assistance to servicemen and women, veterans, and their families.

The Garden already delivers a range of activities for youngsters aged five to 18 with disabilities and learning difficulties through its Forget-me-not Programme which has recently been highly commended in The Daily Telegraph’s Gardening Against the Odds Awards, for its Young Gardeners project.

It is hoped that this collaboration will lead to many more joint working opportunities in the future.

If you are involved in a choir or group that might like to perform or you would like information about the poster design competition, contact Sarah Hall at the Garden on 01665 511356.

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