College teachers and students praised after creating police memorial garden

A Merrist Wood College tutor and students have been commended by the Chief Constable of Surrey Police for their work building a memorial garden.

Tutors and students in the Mount Browne Memorial Garden
Tutors and students in the Mount Browne Memorial Garden

The garden, at the force’s Headquarters at Mount Browne, was designed by garden design student Bethany Weekes to provide a quiet space for police officers and staff to remember late colleagues or to take a moment of reflection.

Students studying landscaping courses have been working on the hard and soft landscaping under the supervision of landscape construction lecturer Tony Begg and the garden was planted by nursery supervisor Jane Challen.

Begg, who has worked at the college for 27 years, was awarded a Surrey Police Commendation for the scheme.

Chief Constable Lynne Owens said: "I have been hugely impressed by the level of professionalism and commitment shown.

"I do not believe that we could have achieved so much without the generosity of spirit shown by Tony and his team in providing personal time and commitment to the project.

"Tony Begg is inspirational and his passion and energy in relation to this project is infectious. The project really is an example of community partnership at its best."

She added: "The students representing Merrist Wood on this project have conducted themselves with the utmost professionalism and are a credit to the name of Merrist Wood. The work on the garden will continue for some time to come and I have no doubt that we will collectively produce a very special place."

Most of the work has been completed on the garden but students will continue to put the finishing touches to it for the rest of the academic year.

It is expected to formally open this summer.

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