A plea for help from the manager of a retirement housing scheme for older people in the North Shropshire town of Market Drayton led to three Secured by Design (SBD) member companies coming together to provide the funds to transform its overgrown, tired and unused garden into an attractive, tranquil and enjoyable haven for socialising, relaxation and wildlife.
The makeover gifted to an independent living scheme run and managed by Connexus Housing Association, included new benches, bird tables and boxes, planters and a huge cut-back of overgrown plants and a tidy-up of the flower beds – providing a much-needed boost for residents whose movements have been restricted during COVID-19 lockdowns.
The winning application from the Connexus scheme manager, Jeanette Randall, stated that their eldest resident, aged 100, would love to see their outside areas come to life again – turning places that were dull and bland into places where residents could sit and watch the birds and animals return to their garden.
The application stated: “This has been such an awful time for them. Many of them have not been outside for over a year and it would give them such a lift and bring joy and smiles to my residents.”
This garden gift was the result of a ‘Spring is in the Air Competition’ run by F.Bamford (Engineering) Ltd, known in the industry as Bamford Doors and its key partner companies CAME KMS and Entrotec Limited.
Alexis Smith, Managing Director, Bamford Doors, said: “It was great to see how happy the residents were once they could see how their outside spaces had been transformed. It made all the hard work preparing for the day, and all the hard physical work on the day itself, very worthwhile and rewarding.”
There were more than 30 entries to the competition, which had a deadline of 30 April, leaving the judging panel of senior representatives from the three companies with a tough decision. A winner was announced on 24 May and the winning garden has just been completed.
There were two runners-up:
- Coastline Housing in Camborne (a housing scheme for older people). They received a cheque to pay for a specific bench they want to purchase
- Great Places Housing Group in Manchester (which helps people who are homeless). They are due to have their garden improvements completed by the end of this month (July).
The competition run on social media was open to councils, housing associations and charitable schemes to transform an outdoor community space for the benefit of residents.
The three companies partnered with other charity organisations to procure goods and materials for the project. For example, Emmaus, a charity in Bolton, which provides a home and meaningful work to up to 20 previously homeless people, made the benches and planters.
Bamford Doors specialise in the design, manufacture and installation of SBD communal solutions, meeting the needs of local authorities, housing associations, builders, private landlords, schools, student accommodation and other public and private sector buildings. They are one of the longest established communal door manufacturers in the UK and were one of the first companies to receive SBD accreditation for a communal door. Bamford Doors has branches in Bristol – serving the South West and Wales, and Milton Keynes – serving the South East of England. They have been an SBD member company since January 2013.
Entrotec are trusted pioneers and leading manufacturers of door entry solutions in UK residential and commercial markets. They are renowned for manufacturing and supplying high quality audio and video vandal resistant door entry, concierge systems and proximity access control systems. Established in 1987 Entrotec have significant experience designing and bringing to market innovative systems tailored to client specific requirements to ensure the security of their property, their people and their communities.
CAME KMS are the UK’s leading supplier of residential access control products and services, predominantly supplying the social housing sector (local authorities and housing associations) and private landlords. The SimpleKey Web system is a unique and innovative access control solution for all multi-user residences with instant fob administration from any web-enabled device.
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