Pupils’ passion for plants wows voters

27/6/2011 (AN)''Grange Infants School voluntary gardening club placed a bid to Hampshire County Council for �1,231 as part of their You Decide grant and came first.''Pictured is: (back l-r) Paige Reyland (7), Jessica Fish (7), Kieran Wood (7) and Jack Wood (7) with (front l-r) Nicholas Nutt (7) and Abby Clarke (7) in their allotment.''Picture: Sarah Standing (112297-2948)
27/6/2011 (AN)''Grange Infants School voluntary gardening club placed a bid to Hampshire County Council for �1,231 as part of their You Decide grant and came first.''Pictured is: (back l-r) Paige Reyland (7), Jessica Fish (7), Kieran Wood (7) and Jack Wood (7) with (front l-r) Nicholas Nutt (7) and Abby Clarke (7) in their allotment.''Picture: Sarah Standing (112297-2948)

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A song about flowers and lots of passion won the day for a group of infants who secured major funding for their gardening club.

Seven representatives from Grange Infants in Gosport wowed voting residents with their rendition of I Love The Flowers and a powerful pitch about why they deserved £1,231 to buy gardening tools, plants, a bench and a bird table.

The six and seven-year-olds came first out of 12 finalists in this year’s £12,000 YOUdecide scheme, run by Hampshire County Council in partnership with the Gosport Community Safety Partnership, to support projects residents want to fund.

Nicholas Nutt, seven, says: ‘When they said we were first, I thought they were joking!

‘As soon as I knew it was true, I knew it was such a big opportunity in my life to do something for the school.

‘We had to go for it – that’s why we were there to try our best and fight for our school.’

Jack Wood, seven, says: ‘I was so proud when we got the money and I couldn’t believe we came first!’

Abby Clarke, seven, who is looking forward to accessorising the garden with the winnings, adds: ‘We’re going to get new tools for the garden, some new gloves and seeds too.

‘Some of the things had been used so much they were broken and that’s why we needed the money. We want other people to enjoy gardening next year too.’

Grange Infants’ gardening club, for up to 18 youngsters at any one time, is run by two teaching assistants who volunteer every Wednesday after school for an hour.

Sam Myers, deputy head, says: ‘The children were fantastic on the day. They went out there full of confidence and captivated their audience.

‘The gardening club means a lot to them and they enjoy planting a range of flowers and seeing them grow.

‘They also grow vegetables like potatoes, carrots and garlic which they give to the cookery club to use in the kitchen.

‘Recently we were treated to garlic bread and I’m confident potatoes will be on the menu soon!’

In September we’re all going to go for a big shop and fill the garden with the items the children bid for.

‘I know they just can’t wait.’