Lily’s Garden Blessing

The Bishop blesses Lily’s Garden

 15th November 2019

On a rather rainy day the Bishop of Lichfield, Michael Ipgrave visited St Edward’s Church of England Academy to lead collective worship and provide a blessing for ‘Lily’s Garden’.

 Lily’s Garden is a project that has been partly sponsored by Allchurches Trust Limited and Breeze House Designs based in Leek. The garden is located in the central quad of the Academy and was an area that had become over grown and was only used in the sunnier summer months but is now available for pupils and staff to use no matter what the Moorlands weather might throw at them. Whether it be for simply spending time together outside, for collective worship and reflection, whilst tending the allotments, or whilst sitting eating lunch, the structure provided by Breeze House has given an impressive central focal point.

The garden is in memory of a dedicated friend and colleague of the Academy who was well loved by all who met her, Mrs Lily Vernon. During the spring and summer months the garden will be planted out by pupils not only from St Edward’s but also from The Meadows and Springfields Special Schools. There will be lots of flowers and scented plants to attract wildlife and give a sensory element to the centre of the school.

The Academy is very grateful to Allchurches Trust for providing the funding for this area. Allchurches Trust is one of the UK’s largest grant-making charities and gave more than £16 million to churches, charities and communities in 2018. Its funds come from its ownership of Ecclesiastical Insurance Group.

Bishop Michael was impressed with the work that has been undertaken and could see the potential the garden has for the entire community.

Mr Norman Vernon, Lily’s husband and Academy janitor stated: “This is a lasting memory for Lily and will give everyone at St Edward’s a lovely space to enjoy. She would have loved it!”

The Academy would like to offer its gratitude to Allchurches Trust and Breeze House for their support, without which this project could not have taken place.

Thanks also go to the pupils, parents and staff who have been involved in bringing this project into existence.