GALLERY: Completion of £80,000 Centenary Green celebrated with small gathering

Centenary Green has been created by Octavia Hill’s Birthplace Museum Trust next to the Birthplace Ho

Centenary Green has been created by Octavia Hill’s Birthplace Museum Trust next to the Birthplace House on South Brink, Wisbech. Picture: Roger Rawson. - Credit: Archant

THE completion of Centenary Green was marked on Wednesday with a small gathering of the main contributors who helped to fund the £80,000 project.

From left: Cllr David Oliver, Teresa Squires of the National Trust, Michael Theobald of the Wisbech

From left: Cllr David Oliver, Teresa Squires of the National Trust, Michael Theobald of the Wisbech Society and Wisbech Rotary Club, Andrew Verney and John Foster of Foster Property Maintenance, David Crouch, Octavia Hill’s Birthplace Museum Trust project manager, Cllr Chris Seaton, PCSO Kat Walker, Peter Clayton, chairman of the museum trust, Fenland District Council leader Alan Melton and Sarah Gosling of WREN. - Credit: Archant

Centenary Green has been created by Octavia Hill’s Birthplace Museum Trust next to the Birthplace House on South Brink, Wisbech.

The site had been derelict for more than 10 years.

Peter Clayton, Chairman of the Birthplace Trust, said: “The generosity of all the donors, large and small is greatly appreciated. Centenary Green is a truly magnificent commemoration of the life of Octavia Hill which will benefit the people of Wisbech forever.”

The formal opening of the Green will take place at a date yet to be fixed when the planting and lawns are established and all the contributors will be invited to join the celebration.


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In 2012, the centenary year of the death of Octavia Hill, the Octavia Hill Birthplace Museum Trust were instrumental in the purchase of the site by The National Trust, aided by a matching grant from Fenland District Council, who have leased the site to the Birthplace Trust for 99 years for the creation of a public open space. On top of the £110,000 purchase price nearly £90,000 has had to be raised in grants, donations and work in kind from local community organisations, companies and individuals.

The main contributors are WREN, who have provided £35,500, and Foster Property Maintenance Ltd, a Wisbech based property contractor who provided £20,000 towards the construction costs as well as managing the construction works.

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Learning disability charity FACET - Fenland Area Community Enterprise Trust - also played a role in the garden’s creation through its partnership with Foster.

The March-based charity levelled the topsoil and laid turf to provide the lawns which form a key feature of the garden.

Linda Ingram, of FACET, said: “FACET has been a charity partner of Foster’s for the last couple of years and the charity has benefited in a variety of ways, for instance through orders for products and services and the offer of work experience placements for students.

“A team of FACET staff and students were involved in the creation of the garden and the experience was both enjoyable and valuable to everyone involved.

“The students are very proud indeed to have been given this wonderful opportunity, from which they have learnt so much. It is something they will most certainly never forget.”

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