Five students from the Minster School in Southwell have volunteered their time to help in the Education Garden at the Archbishop’s Palace, whilst working toward their Duke of Edinburgh Awards.

The girls: Lauren, Milly and Kimberley are all in Year 9 and the boys: William  and Dan are in Year 10.

Southwell Minster gardener, Amanda Rushen is happy to have them work alongside her:

“It’s great.. this is a lovely space appreciated by locals and visitors alike.. and this will be a huge help especially in the woodland area. The flowerbeds soon become overgrown and it’s nice to work with other people as I’m usually on my own.”

Milly and Lauren have both previously done some gardening with the Brownies, and Kimberley has experience from working on her father’s farm. Milly’s family have an allotment in Southwell. Lauren says:

“Gardening is important, it shows respect and the garden here goes with our school so it’s good that we are volunteering to keep it looking nice.”

William is primarily volunteering for his Duke of Edinburgh award and he prefers the spade work and clearing, whilst Dan has enjoyed making paths with wooden logs.

School Chaplain, Fr Matthew Askey arranged the volunteer project along with Duke of Edinburgh leader, Liz Cutts. He says:

“A girl called Jo sings in the Minster Girls’ Choir and she is volunteering for a year to help with children’s and families ministry at the Minster.

Some are in the surrounding gardens and more will be joining the Stewards and Guides. One is in the vergers office.. There is potential for many more – 100 students are yet to arrange their volunteering and some of those may well choose to get involved at the cathedral. It’s great to have young people helping at the cathedral, and the Duke of Edinburgh Awards encourage them to do this sort of thing.”