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School children go back to nature with hospital garden visit

Wildlife_Garden_IDA7251Students from a local school dropped into Heartlands Hospital Children’s Ward recently for a spot of gardening.

The children, from years 4 to 6 at St Thomas More Primary School, Sheldon, visited the hospital to meet consultant Scott Hackett who shared his knowledge on wildlife and helped the children plant wildflowers and trees in the Children’s Ward garden.

Chris Morrell, play specialist, said: “It was great for the children to meet Scott, he’s very knowledgeable about insects, plants and wildlife and the children had a lot of fun learning about the outdoors.

“It’s also great to have more flowers and trees planted in the patient garden. It’s an area we’re trying to develop and make a pleasant environment for poorly patients to come in and enjoy, to get them away from their beds – if they’re well enough – and to get some fresh air. It really helps brighten up the day of some of the children on the ward, and speeds up the recovery process.”

Ann Shakespeare, teaching assistant at the school, said: “It was a lovely afternoon, the children had a lot of fun and learnt a lot at the same time. The visit came about after Scott visited the school, gave a talk about wildlife and had a look round our own garden project. Scott then invited us to the hospital. We’re going to come back in the autumn to do some more and help keep the garden a pleasant and relaxing space for patients to enjoy.”

If you’re interested in supporting the Children’s Ward at Heartlands Hospital, whether it’s through fundraising, or volunteering, get in touch with the Heart of England Charity by emailing, call 0121 424 3838 or visit

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