Branston helps local school go wild

Posted: 24 April 2012
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Volunteers from Branston have ‘mucked in' to help Digby Church of England School improve its outdoor area.

Branston donated a new playground shelter for children and parents to use and a group of volunteers from the Lincoln site spent a day helping the school extend and rejuvenate its wildlife area.

The school initially approached Branston for help to fix up its playground shelter, which after many years of use had become quite run down. When the Branston team visited the school, they soon established that the shelter was getting beyond economical repair so they agreed to fund a brand new one. And when the headteacher explained the school's plans for their wildlife area, Branston also offered to provide resources to help out - a range of wildlife-friendly plants and seeds along with a fully-equipped team of volunteers for the day.

Simon Telfer, HR and logistics director at Branston said: "When Digby School approached us about helping to fix their playground shelter, we were more than happy to oblige. Once we'd taken a look at it however, we decided that it was beyond repair so it made more sense to replace it. It's something that the children and their parents get a lot of use out of and we felt it was a good investment."

Following on from the donation, the volunteering team at Branston started to put together ideas for the wildlife area. Andy Vinter, the gardener who maintains Branston's greenery, drew up plans and provided advice on the best plants and flowers to attract lots of wildlife.

Simon continues: "It's really important to us that we give back to the communities where our factories are based. It's great for our staff to get involved in projects like this and be able to make a real difference to our local area."

Ten volunteers from Branston arrived bright and early on the day to rotivate, tidy, dig and plant to create a number of differently themed areas for the schoolchildren to enjoy and learn from. Working alongside some eager young helpers from the school, the team created a ‘stumpery', a wildflower meadow, a grassed area with seating surrounded by bulbs and plants, a shrubbery and ‘climbers' across the fencing surrounding the area.

Branston contributed a further £250 towards the cost of plants and seeds and the tree stumps were donated by Lincolnshire Tree Services. JMH, a local building and civil engineering company, helped out by removing a layer of turf to provide the ideal foundations for a wildflower meadow

Graham Boyall, headteacher at Digby Church of England School, said: "We initially approached Branston to help us to repair our shelter which had become run down. We were delighted when Branston suggested they could replace it entirely! It's a really important fixture in the playground and has a number of uses.

"We were also delighted when Branston asked if they could help us with anything else, which is when we suggested the wildlife garden. The area needed a bit of attention as it takes a lot of time to maintain. We try our best, but maintenance has to be done out of school hours as we simply don't have the resources. The area now looks great and the children really enjoyed helping the team out. We are really grateful for the effort that everyone went to."