Celebrating the benefits of gardening for health

Award-winning garden designer, BBC TV presenter and garden writer, Mark Lane, is teaming up with disability charity Leonard Cheshire to promote the benefits of gardening for health and well-being as part of its partnership with the National Garden Scheme.

The National Garden Scheme (NGS) made Leonard Cheshire one of its Gardens and Health beneficiaries in 2018, with a donation of £120.000, to develop sensory gardens and horticultural volunteering projects for disabled people across the UK.

Mark, a passionate advocate of gardening for disabled people, is supporting Leonard Cheshire in its mission to showcase the therapeutic benefits of gardens. He will design one of the sensory gardens at Leonard Cheshire’s care home in Bedfordshire and is also working with the charity to produce a short film about how gardening can be universally inclusive with practical tips and inspiration.

The film will highlight how gardens and gardening can offer an immeasurable sense of well-being, both physically and mentally, no matter what level of ability you have. The video will be released during the National Garden Scheme Gardens and Health week from 18th to 24th August 2018.

Mark points out that gardens that are fully accessible help bring communities together, help tackle isolation but above all are great fun and incredible for both mental and physical well-being: “It’s also easy to garden on a budget, even for free.  And if I can do it, so can you. I’m really proud to be supporting Leonard Cheshire’s work with the National Garden Scheme to spread this important message and make gardens and gardening more accessible for everyone,” he says.

Laura Crandley, executive director of partnerships for Leonard Cheshire commented that they were very excited about the partnership with the NGS: “We all know that gardens can have a hugely positive impact on people’s physical and mental health and our work with the NGS is demonstrating this,” she said. “We are absolutely thrilled to have Mark’s support and together we plan to show that gardens can provide opportunities for everyone, whatever their ability,” she added.

CEO of the National Garden Scheme, George Plumptre, is proud that the NGS is funding the important work with Leonard Cheshire and spoke of his delight that Mark Lane is teaming up with the charity: “As an individual who opens his garden to the public under the National Garden Scheme, he is the perfect advocate of the positive effects of gardens on mental and physical wellbeing,” said Mr Plumptre.

Further information on the work of Leonard Cheshire can be found at: www.leonardcheshire.org

The work of the National Garden Scheme and details of their Handbook, which is published annually are available by visiting: www.ngs.org.uk

Mark, who is the UK’s first garden designer/BBC gardening broadcaster to be in a wheelchair, is a regular presenter on BBC TV Gardeners’ World and also fronts BBC TV coverage of the RHS shows. Following a car accident and a long rehabilitation period, in which he confesses he was ‘re-built’ both physically and mentally, he switched professions to study garden and landscape design. He now has he own award-winning garden design and landscape practice – please visit https://www.marklanedesigns.com

Or www.marklane.tv

Photo credits: ©Leonard Cheshire – banner and photograph (left) Mark with resident Leonard Cheshire residents.