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TV star gardener plants seeds of success at Sutton College garden

There were green fingered high fives all round when young people taking part in a Prince’s Trust Team programme at Sutton Coldfield College had a garden which they had designed and built officially opened by Alan Gardner, star of TV’s The Autistic Gardener.

The award-winning designer, who lives in the area, met the group called Team 137 as they finished their two-week community project. The newly created garden is right next to the Sutton Coldfield A level Centre which opened its doors this month.

Praising the learners for their hard work, Alan Gardner said: “It’s great to see so many young people engaging with an outdoor environment and making it their own.

“The Team told me they were inspired by their work and want to do more going forward. They’re the future custodians of the green areas in and around Sutton Coldfield so it’s nice to know they will continue taking pride in their surroundings and giving something back to the community.”

The Contemplation Garden was the work of 12 young people aged between 16 and 25. A 20ft x 25ft area was cleared of its overgrowth and replaced with a compost and green turf. Both of these were decorated with paving stones, rocks and other garden accessories, including a bench and picnic table.

Team Leader, Mike Wall said: “With hundreds of new and returning students now at the college, this is the perfect time to launch the garden. The Team are calling it a Contemplation Garden because they love the idea of individuals and groups of friends coming by to sit, think and talk while admiring the plants and flowers in bloom throughout the year.”

The Prince’s Trust Team programme helps young people to build the skills and confidence they need to get their lives track and reach their full potential.

During the 12-week personal development programme, young people get involved in team building activities, a week-long residential trip, a community project and two weeks of work experience.

They also get advice on how to write CVs as well as gaining nationally recognised qualifications.

Click here for further information about Prince’s Trust Team programmes or email


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