'I'm delighted' - Students create accessible garden for 'lovely couple'

Left to Right: Zibby Parker, Adrian Waterhouse-Taylor and Nicky O’Brien, in the garden ahead of its makeover 

Left to Right: Zibby Parker, Adrian Waterhouse-Taylor and Nicky O’Brien, in the garden ahead of its makeover - Credit: Suffolk Rural

A group of students have created an accessible garden area for a 64-year-old man in Felixstowe.

The students are studying horticulture at Suffolk Rural, formerly Otley College, and have completed a DIY SOS style project for couple Adrian Waterhouse-Taylor and his wife Louise.

64-year-old Adrian, lost his foot four years ago and recently spent four months in hospital before being diagnosed with an abscess in his spine.

Students from Suffolk New College are transforming the garden of Adrien Waterhouse-Taylor in Felixst

Students from Suffolk New College are transforming the garden of Adrien Waterhouse-Taylor in Felixstowe. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

The project was led by students Zibby Parker and Nicky O'Brien, who also both live in the seaside town.

Zibby and Adrian have known each other for 25 years, and, when she wanted to do something for one of her friends, all the class agreed to help.

Adrian said: "Zibby, her colleague Nicky and the class have spent lots of time taking photos, designing the garden and making it accessible.

Students from Suffolk New College are transforming the garden of Adrien Waterhouse-Taylor in Felixst

Students from Suffolk New College are transforming the garden of Adrien Waterhouse-Taylor in Felixstowe. L-R Neville Stein, Adrien Waterhouse-Taylor, Zibby Parker and Nicky O'Brien. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

"I want to live a normal life, I want to go to the pub every Friday and that's how I feel. As part of that, I want the garden to have a similar feel to the rest of the house that allows me to carry on as before, as much as possible."

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The project was funded by Adrian, but all the labouring, creativity and designed was done by the students at the college.

"When it is completed we will have a knockout garden in our forever home. I am really looking forward to it. I've got an image in my head. I don't think I will cry at the end for the big reveal, but my wife might."

All the students helping to renovate Adrian and Louise's garden to make it more accessible

All the students helping to renovate Adrian and Louise's garden to make it more accessible - Credit: Suffolk Rural

51-year-old Zibby has been friends with Adrian's wife Louise since they were five years old.

She said: "Adrian has been through an awful lot in the last couple of years. I went to college and explained his situation and everyone on the course bought into it."

Zibby's co-designer Nicky, said: "We will be creating a lawn, a gravel and winter garden, a vegetable bed and an herbaceous border. It's a great project and everyone is really thrilled to be involved.

Neville Stein transforming the garden of Adrien Waterhouse-Taylor in Felixstowe.

Neville Stein transforming the garden of Adrien Waterhouse-Taylor in Felixstowe. - Credit: Sarah Lucy Brown

"Adrian and his wife are a lovely couple, so it is nice to be able to support them."

Upon completion, Adrian said: "I’m delighted with the garden, and my wife and I are incredibly grateful to the Suffolk Rural team for their amazing efforts.”