Praise for green fingered Beccles pupils as Royal Horticultural Society president visits school garden

Beccles Free School pupils in the garden with Sir Nicholas Bacon. Picture: Nick Butcher.

Beccles Free School pupils in the garden with Sir Nicholas Bacon. Picture: Nick Butcher. - Credit: Archant

The president of the Royal Horticultural Society has given his seal of approval to a garden nurtured by pupils in Beccles.

Sir Nicholas Bacon, centre, with staff, pupils and guests in the garden at Beccles Free School. Pict

Sir Nicholas Bacon, centre, with staff, pupils and guests in the garden at Beccles Free School. Picture: Nick Butcher. - Credit: Archant

Members of Beccles Free School's gardening club have been working hard to transform a neglected area of grass into a colourful garden with flowers, artwork and their own vegetable patch.

And today, society president Sir Nicholas Bacon was invited along to see how the garden has flourished.

He said: 'It think it looks fantastic and they have done a really great job.

'Now they just need to remember to return in the summer holidays to eat what they have grown.'


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Sir Nicholas was joined by pupils, parents and other community representatives, including mayor Richard Stubbings.

He said: 'I'm really passionate about gardening and I try to inspire people to garden because it's such good fun, it's intellectual, it's practical and you feel a lot better than looking at a screen when you could be outside on a beautiful day.'

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Pupils tend to the garden every Wednesday afternoon as part of the school's enrichment scheme.

The project was started by volunteer Jim Miles, who originally helped out in the garden at the school's former home in Carlton Colville.

He moved with the school over to Beccles in September 2014, and is also helped by parent Steve Parsons and arts enrichment teacher Jennie Robinson.

He said: 'I love being in the garden and I love to see the progress the students make.

'And it's brilliant to see their produce going from the garden to the kitchen.'

The school received the Food for Life bronze award earlier this year for its healthy and climate friendly food culture. And now they have got their eyes set on the silver award.

Fourteen-year-old Luke Lanham is a member of the gardening club.

He said: 'It was quite nerve-wracking having Sir Nicholas here because he's really high up in the gardening world, but he has given us some good tips on things we can do.

'I enjoy being in the garden because you get to relax.'

Headteacher Nigel Youngman said the group had created a 'truly special place.'

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