ITV garden celebrity takes on children’s ward garden

Posted on September 21, 2017 by AireAdmin No Comments

TV celebrity Katie Rushworth will soon be designing a brand new garden for the children’s unit at Airedale Hospital.

Katie, who is originally from Baildon, presents the popular ITV gardening show ‘Love Your Garden’ alongside Alan Titchmarsh and will be offering her design services for free. 

Amy Kitching, Paediatric Research Nurse at Airedale NHS Foundation trust, explains where the idea came from:

“We have a big grassed area that backs on to the children’s ward and we had a little boy who was watching the rabbits out there a few weeks ago and he told us how lovely it was to watch them.  We looked at it and it was a bit overgrown so it got us thinking how nice would it be if we could do something out there.  So we tweeted Katie Rushworth and she actually came to visit us and agreed to design it for us.  It was great to meet her; we were amazed as she was thanking us for asking her to be involved!”

Katie will create a brightly coloured, child-friendly garden with a hide and seek theme. Staff have asked her to create a different view from each of the windows on the ward so for the children that come in regularly, and stay in different areas of the ward each time, they can see new things every time.

Katie has also taken on the fundraising for the garden and set up her own Just Giving page to raise the money needed for the materials and construction of the garden.  Local landscape builder Gareth Clarke from Keighley has also offered to put up time and labour and his team to do all the building work for free. 

Nicola Thompson, Children’s Ward Manager adds:

“We are very, very grateful to Katie and Gareth for their fantastic support.  Normally you would design the garden first and then say this is what you want but because there is no budget we are doing it the other way around and asking for what people are willing to give us and then Katie can design around that.”

Katie’s 9 year old daughter Polly was born at the hospital and so she was keen to help. 

Katie says: Designing a garden for the Children’s ward at Airedale hospital was a no brainer for me. It’s a total privilege to be able to provide something that may help the children and young adults that visit the ward as well as giving back to my local community.”

Design work in the garden will start in late Autumn. To donate to the Just Giving page go to

https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/childrenshospitalgarden

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