Public will pick design for garden

A community garden in Scotland will undergo a £1.5m redevelopment with the input of the public.

The biggest-ever consultation by a UK community group will decide which of two landscape architect practices will transform a community garden in Scotland. The Douglas Bader Garden in Cupar, Fife, was due to be closed after council officials were told it was pointless to spend £10,000 to repair it after repeated vandalism. But an action group was formed to rescue the garden, which was created in memory of World War Two RAF hero Douglas Bader, for the benefit of disabled people. Glasgow-based TGP Landscape Architects and Edinburgh-based Ironside Farrar competed against many leading European design companies to be the last two. Now both designs are being circulated to 10,000 residential and business addresses in and around the Cupar area on A4 colour leaflets, which are also being displayed in public places. Both companies were given 300 words to describe their designs to help the public decide which should be built in Duffus Park. Founder member and operations manager for the action group Andrew Gold said: “Both designs are great. We asked for designs that offered total wheelchair access, but someone who is not disabled would not notice because they are completely seamless.” TGP created an elevated walkway that goes into a spiral in the centre with a more modern design. Ironside’s design involves a community garden with flowerbeds and a lake in the centre. Whichever design is chosen next month, it is expected to cost up to £1.5m to complete the project with lottery money and fundraising.

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