Gosport school plants giant anchor at centre of transformed garden

PRIDE St John's pupils Owen Colbern, 10, and Hayley Hill, 11, in the new garden
PRIDE St John's pupils Owen Colbern, 10, and Hayley Hill, 11, in the new garden
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AN EMPTY patch of grass has been turned into a colourful community garden by a group of eco-friendly schoolchildren.

Youngsters from St John’s Primary School, in Grove Road, Gosport, have helped design a maritime-themed space on the corner of Grove Road and Sealark Road.

At its centre is a giant anchor which used to belong to the Royal Navy sailing frigate HMS Trincomalee.

The children spent the day planting flowers and shrubs in front of judges from the South and South East In Bloom competition.

Headteacher Joy Lowman said: ‘They really love it and they have enjoyed being part of the whole process.

‘It’s good for them to be involved in something not just within school grounds but out in the community.

‘The school’s eco-council does a lot around the school but this is their first foray into the town.

‘I think the best thing for them was the anchor. They wanted an anchor in the middle and so for them to actually get one was amazing.’

The transformation of the once-empty space was funded by Barratt Homes. It is intended to be a celebration of the Hardway area’s maritime history.

Gosport-based environmental charity Groundwork Solent helped the children put together the final design.

The ward councillor for Hardway, Cllr Roger Allen, had been campaigning for Trincomalee’s anchor to be sited there for years.

He said: ‘I think it will be iconic for the people of Hardway.

‘I’m absolutely delighted. It’s going to be there for a lot longer than I will be around.’