A PROJECT to create a memorial garden honouring those have lived and died serving 6 Regiment RLC has helped military/civilian relationships to flourish in north Yorkshire.

Following their move to Dishforth Airfield in 2016, serving members of the regiment decided to create a green space at their new home to act as a focal point for ceremonial occasions such as Remembrance Day.

And hard work from soldiers – as well as input from community groups, school and individuals – helped the idea to blossom into a colourful reality.

Beginning by engaging with the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS), organisers commissioned local landscaper Peter Cunliffe to design an outdoor area featuring a ceremonial centre piece, space for individual memorials and a prayer garden.

Youngsters from seven nearby schools were enlisted to take part in a “boot camp” competition which tasked them with decorating and planting up an old Army boot, while families of those currently serving formed a gardening community group and attended workshops run by the RHS.

The project also benefited from the input of Faith Douglas, whose work with Help for Heroes meant that Service veterans were involved with the design, build and ongoing care of the garden.

Since its completion, the new community asset has impressed expert judges from Harrogate’s Spring Flower Show, with the 6 RLC A Homecoming Prayer show garden winning the 2017 gold award and best-in-show prizes.

More than 450 children have been involved in the project, with their decorated boots and recycled pallets delighting visitors to this summer’s RHS Harlow Carr Flower Show.

Serving members of 6 RLC hope the garden leaves a lasting legacy for soldiers, their families and members of the wider community.

To follow the latest progress with the garden, follow the organisers on Twitter and Facebook.

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