Grandad’s Garden gets new volunteer

Dennis Marshall with his community garden on Bank Street. (d608b232)
Dennis Marshall with his community garden on Bank Street. (d608b232)

A new business owner has taken over a community garden after its previous keeper decided to call it a day.

Coun Dennis Marshall created his little haven – known as Grandad’s Garden – around 10 years ago.

The Observer published his appeal for a volunteer to take the Bank Street plot over in September – and family man Nigel Matthews thought it would be the ideal way to show off his skills.

The Morley dad-of-four has just set up his new business NM Garden Care after being made redundant by Kodak after 30 years. He got in touch with Coun Marshall after reading our report.

Mr Matthews, 46, of Parkland Avenue, said: “I thought it was time to start doing something I enjoyed.

“It’s Dennis’ work, I will just continue with its up-keep.”

Mr Matthews decided the garden would be a good way to advertise his new business and would only need to work on the space for about one day a week.

Coun Marshall, 83, who lives on Bank Street, said: “It’s brilliant beause I did wonder whether anyone would come forward.

“Nigel came and had a look at it and said it appealed to him and he would keep it tidy.”

Coun Marshall joked that he could go down his steps and make sure the garden is kept in good condition.

Repeated visits by vandals meant Coun Marshall decided to call it a day.

Damage included a bird table that was broken in half and the removing of stones so that the wall keeps falling over. The plot has also been is bombarded with litter.

Plants which are currently in the garden include roses, a bay tree, daffodils and various other shrubs.

“It would be a shame to see it go back to wasteland,” said Mr Matthews.

Coun Marshall now plans to use more time for councillor duties, his role as secretary of the local Royal British Legion – and is even planning a charity wingwalk.