From Stonehaven Rotary Club –
The speaker at last week’s zoom meeting of Stonehaven Rotary Club was John Cruickshank, convenor of the Horizon project, who became convenor of the Horizon group two years ago and told members he was not a gardener!
Covid 19 and the lockdown resulted in Horizon being unable to do all the work they would normally do but with the easing, the group has been busy round the town, which is much appreciated by everyone.
There are around 35 volunteers who turn out regularly on Tuesday mornings – they are very visible with their yellow vests and the Horizon flag – John said that the social aspects are important to members with the group usually ending up with a socially distanced cup of coffee/tea.
Unfortunately it was not possible to have no hanging baskets this year but there is evidence all around the town of the planting work done before lockdown.
When lockdown eased, the Council asked for the help of the group in dealing with the weeds around the town and in the Japanese garden which is being developed in Mineralwell park and the results of that hard work have been welcomed by residents.
John said that there was a real need to get the message across to individual householders and businesses to take responsibility for the frontages of their property to prevent damage to the fabric of walls and pavements by the weeds.
Horizon has been looking to move towards sustainable planting with shrubs and perennials to transform areas. Individual members of the group have taken responsibility for areas in the community.
Painted Pebble Project
John spoke about the painted pebbles project. Over 6 weeks, they spent 300 man hours gathering, laying and cementing in over 2000 stones at a cost of £400 in the areas allocated to them by the Council. He spoke about the work on The Burns Garden, which is designed as an area of contemplation and meditation and also on preparation (during lockdown) and the subsequent planting of the Alison B.
John ended by speaking of the reliance of Horizon on the support of businesses, the Stonehaven Business Association, other voluntary groups and individuals in the town.
Looking to the future, there are concerns that with the constraints on council budgets due to Covid 19 the cuts to services will impact on Landscape Services with whom Horizon has close cooperation and on the provision of flowers. The average spend on flowers for the 250 floral displays around the town is around £4000 plus there are the plants usually provided by the Council, but not in 2020.
Horizon can always do with additional volunteers so if you appreciate the results of their efforts, why not think about joining them? Go to their website to find out more. www.stonehavenhorizon.co.uk
Vote of thanks was by Jennifer Macdonald