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The public have a chance to stop the demise of Suntrap Garden
Suntrap Garden’s Open Day in May 2011 could be its last unless the National Trust for Scotland (NTS) and Oatridge College’s scandalous decision to sell the Green Belt located Garden to property developers is halted.
But all is not lost.
A group of representatives of the organisations which use Suntrap is seeking a rescue package by pursuing funding to run the Garden with the help of volunteers. And as part of the effort the Garden volunteers are holding a further Open Day as part of its fundraising efforts on Sunday 22nd May from 10.30am – 4pm. Attractions will include a sale of plants, displays, exhibits and demonstrations, face-painting for the youngsters, Eubee a snowy owl, gardening for children, refreshments and home baking.
Entry to the garden is £2 for adults and free for children and OAPs, with the money from that and several of the stalls going to the Friends of Suntrap and Save our Suntrap Campaign. Parking is free.
Suntrap is reached from the A8 and is signposted about half a mile west of the Edinburgh City Bypass roundabout. It is served by Lothian Buses services 25, 34 and 45 to the Park and Ride at Riccarton/Heriot Watt Campus.
Benefactor, George Boyd Anderson, gave the Garden to the NTS in 1966 as a place for horticultural education for those with small gardens – a concept well ahead of its time. He wanted the NTS to ensure it would be really useful to the public. It has provided advice and classes to generations of gardeners and, in recent years, has been a special therapeutic training resource for students with learning difficulties who find the place relaxing and rewarding.
Suntrap is well known in the Gardening Community. The Save Our Suntrap (SOS) Group, led by the Friends of Suntrap (the very first NTS Friends’ group) comprises members of national and local organisations such as Royal Caledonian Horticultural Society, Perennial, Scottish Gardeners’ Forum, National Bonsai Collection and Suntrap Gardening Club.
SOS is fighting passionately on behalf of the Garden. This community group proposes to continue to open the Garden to the public and reinstate classes but also has plans to expand the role of the Garden in therapeutic and other ways, including gardening space, providing the public with fresh opportunities to garden in a healthy environment.
SOS is seeking to lease the Garden to prove that it can be run effectively in accordance with the principles under which it was gifted as a legacy to the gardeners of the future. The members have support with the campaign from a variety of sources, including politicians.
It would be an outrage if this Garden is lost to the property market when there is a chance that it could be saved! With help, the sun could shine again on Suntrap!
Members of the public can do their part in saving the garden by showing their support and coming along to our Open Day on Sunday May 22nd.