Friday, 19 August 2022

Garden is peaceful environment for reflection

A NEW peace garden and mosaic has been created at Benson Primary School.

A NEW peace garden and mosaic has been created at Benson Primary School.

The project was made possible thanks to a £4,000 grant from the Ministry of Defence and £500 grant from the Goring-on-Thames Decorative and Fine Arts Society (GADFAS).

The garden, which has a variety of plants and benches, will give pupils a quiet space to spend their time and for parents to wait for clubs to finish.

The mosaic, which bears the name of the school, features the village church — St Helen’s — the war memorial, a Chinook helicopter, a dove, the symbol of peace, and children from the school. Headteacher Helen Crolla said: “We’re hoping it’s going to be here for a very long time. We wanted to have part of the garden that was for remembrance and that was a place of peace and reflection.

“I’m absolutely thrilled with the garden. It always gives me a huge lift when I come in the morning and walk through and see such beautiful plants and such a calm environment. I think it represents the community working together.

“It’s a space outside the front of the school which can be seen by the local community. The mosaic depicts the local community which, for me, is very special. For me it’s just a whole school project that every child could take part in. It was inclusive which was just lovely.

“It’s a symbol of the school working with the community but also aspiring to outstanding.”

Mrs Crolla thanked the Friends of Benson School for its efforts in securing the GADFAS grant.

The mosaic and garden was officially opened by Wing Commander Marty Lock, officer commanding 28 Squadron, who helped the school with the grant process.

Wing Commander Lock, whose three children attended the school and is a former governor, said: “It’s a great privilege to be able to come down from RAF Benson.

"It’s absolutely brilliant, it is a true reflection of Benson in the community. They have got the noisy, busy, bustle of the playground but it’s somewhere they can come with their friends, on their own or with a parent or teacher to have that quiet. It’s very important.”

The mosaic, designed by Charlie Davies, was made with the help of children from the school, who each laid a tile. She said: “We just wanted to try and get the spirit of the school and what it was that’s important in Benson. I’m quite chuffed with it.”

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