Spring is sprung

2019 03 10 Fulbrook Ward after shot 3.JPGSpring is – well – not quite sprung – but certainly near enough for the team from East Oxford Good Neighbours to start springing into action.

Last week the Management Committee got together to start planning the year ahead – more about that later – and this Saturday we made a return trip to the Fulbrook Centre at the Churchill Hospital.

2019 03 10 Fulbrook Ward after shot 4.JPGA team of  eight volunteers from Oxford University and the local area came along. Whilst some did some much-needed weeding and pruning; planted spring bedding and dressed borders with bark mulch, others got to work sanding and painting benches.

2019 03 10 Fulbrook Ward after shot 1.JPGAll that hard work was rewarded by the knowledge of a job well done and the now traditional pizza – this time thanks to the Co-op.

2019 03 10 Fulbrook Ward after shot 2.JPGThanks, too, to the folks at Blanchfords who generously supplied the stain and brushes which we used to revive the benches.



Churchill challenge – Blenheim ward garden

Blenheim - Team Photo

Last Saturday, a team of five Oxford University students, two visiting Americans, Ali (who knows what she’s doing) and Helen (who doesn’t, but has a car) met up at East Oxford Community Centre and headed up to the Churchill Hospital.

This was the sight that met us at Blenheim Ward – a sadly overgrown garden in desperate need of a haircut and a good dose East Oxford tlc.

Let gardening commence!

Armed with bags, barrows, an assortment of brushes, rakes and clipper and the prospect of free pizza, the team got stuck in.

The battle of the buddleia

Helen and Sarah tackled the buddleia – you wouldn’t believe how much buddleia there was!

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Job done!

Well – almost! Just time to pop some bulbs in, grab some pizza and pose for a team photo. We’ll be back in the spring!

Blenheim - Pizza


Churchill challenge – tucking in!

2018 11 24 EONS Blenheim Ward 032a Pizza wf.jpgBefore we tell you about the amazing work by our volunteers at the Churchill’s Blenheim Ward on Saturday, we just want to say a great big thank you to those wonderful people at Domino’s in Headington who donated four pizzas to our hungry team.

A lovely gesture of support from a local business, which was greatly appreciated.


Churchill challenge – getting stuck in

On Saturday, graden guru Ali and a team of six students from the Oxford Hub headed off to the Fulbrook Centre at the Churchill Hospital for phase I of our biggest garden challenge to date – transforming an overgrown patch into a therapeutic, nature-friendly garden for the elderly patients. Huge thanks to Sarah, from The Fulbrook, for making it all happen and the local supermarket for providing sandwiches and pizza for the team.

We took some photos …

The Challenge

2018 10 20 Fulbrook Ward Churchill 01a Before

The flowering currant has taken over and the forsythia is branching out here there everywhere.  Is there a window behind all that?

2018 10 20 Fulbrook Ward Churchill 01 Before

The Alder tree can stay but the central bed it sits in is overgrown.

2018 10 20 Fulbrook Ward Churchill 04 Before

Oh no! Bamboo! Anything but bamboo!

We love a challenge!

2018 10 20 Fulbrook Ward Churchill 05 During

Ffion makes an executive decision to rake up all the leaves discarded by the Alder. Good thinking!!

2018 10 20 Fulbrook Ward Churchill 09 During

“What about the snails?”

2018 10 20 Fulbrook Ward Churchill 10 During

Ruqayah –gets tough with an old root. “This pick is better than the spade, guys!”

2018 10 20 Fulbrook Ward Churchill 11 During

Miranda is on a wheel barrow run to the tipping area outside. She decides she’ll get more in the barrow if she chops the branches up.  Ruqayah perseveres with that root.

2018 10 20 Fulbrook Ward Churchill 12 During

This cradle is falling apart – Ffion and Sarah give it a helping hand –rip, splinter – oh what larks!

2018 10 20 Fulbrook Ward Churchill 13 Team Photo1

After a well-earned lunch of pizza  sandwiches donated by the local supermarkets, the volunteers plant a few bulbs to brighten the place up in the New Year.

For more about the background to this project, see Churchill Challenge – the plan

Churchill challenge – the plan

2018 10 20 Fulbrook Ward Churchill 14 Team Photo2.jpg
Up for the challenge – students from The Oxford Hub

A few months ago, we were approached by Oxford Health Trust to see whether we could help bring some life back to a couple of gardens attached to the Fulbrook Centre at Oxford’s Churchill Hospital.

The Fulbrook Centre provide rehabilitation and therapeutic services for older people and is keen to make the gardens available to patients as part of their therapy. Could we help?

We thought that this was a brilliant – if daunting – project and said that we would love to help.

Our garden guru Ali, got together with Sandra, who runs one of the wards and between them they came up with a nature-friendly garden plan aimed at the patients’ well-being and sensory experiences. Ali proposed a wild flower area, whilst Sandra suggested a new crab apple tree –both attract bees and butterflies.

2018 10 20 Fulbrook Ward Churchill 01 Before.jpg
A bit overgrown

At the moment, though, both gardens are a bit overgrown, so the first task would be to do a huge clear-up. Fortunately, our team of volunteers from The Oxford Hub were up for the challenge!




Can you spare any garden tools?

Garden tools.JPG

Have you been into your garden shed or garage recently and noticed any garden tools that you don’t use, have six of or can’t even remember what exactly they’re for? If so, East Oxford Good Neighbours would love to hear from you. Our student volunteers are great on energy and enthusiasm, but are a bit short on spades, rakes, clippers and forks (the digging kind).

If you live in Oxford and have tools that we might be able to use, Just contact us on info@eastofordgoodneighbours.org – we can arrange to collect within the Oxford Ring Road.