Today is the 20th Anniversary of our school’s Millennium Garden – a favourite place for many of our school community. I wonder if the designers and creators of this wonderful place had any idea of the impact this fabulous resource would have on our school over the years!
This garden was built on the site of an old house, which had belonged to the school and which had the Domestic Science classrooms in it, when our school was Milngavie’s high school. Later it housed classrooms for the Primary School. Our garden was created, built and paid for by the PTA of Milngavie Primary School and Nursery, families who volunteered, and members of the school staff.
Our school and nursery community would like to thank every single person that helped create this beautiful space, or has helped maintain it over the years. It needs maintenance and it is only through the hard work of volunteers that it, and also the school orchard, remain exciting and also safe places for our children to play, learn and explore.
Over the 20 years of its existence, hundreds of nursery and school pupils have enjoyed outdoor learning here. Frogs are spotted, birds are watched, pine cones collected and still it remains a haven for wildlife- despite the noise we sometimes make when we are out here!
This outdoor classroom has provided an incredibly rich learning environment for our children. Our pond brings frogs and newts, and a myriad of insect wildlife including dragon flies and water beetles. The pond evolved originally from the nursery digging pit which our wee ones had very enthusiastically excavated. We put a pond liner in and created a small but very productive pond which quickly increased the biodiversity in the garden!
2 years ago, we applied for a Tesco Bags Of Help grant to help us pay for wood to replace some of the wood in the hard landscaping which was beginning to rot. This was project managed by our amazing Garden Commitee Chairperson, Anne Madsen, who was also responsible for our Orchard Project in 2016. Raised beds were put in and rotting wood replaced with railway sleepers. Lots of families came to the gardening days for this project and we had great fun working together to conserve and improve our lovely garden.
Over the last 3 months, Eric, Giselle and Emile Avenier have worked very hard to turn our garden from a bit of an overgrown wilderness, to a beautiful and exciting space to play and learn in. It has been almost a full time job for Eric and Emile, and in that time they have created new wooden railings, built a performance area, built a castle, built a sandpit, pruned the willow tunnel, cut back literally tons of weeds, brambles and ivy. Eric also sourced bark from Scotia Tree Services, who kindly delivered 4 loads to us free of charge. This has been spread over the garden to create a safe, mud free play surface. Our garden is now ready for next term when we return in August, with plenty of space to run and play, and exciting new structures to explore. I really can’t wait to be out there with children again and share in their joy as they make the space their own again!
The good ship Finn-ready to spark the imagination and sail the seven seas!
Culinary delights happen here! Mud pies a speciality!
Eric working hard, beside the newly tamed willow tunnel.
Emile, spreading new bark in Chateau Avenier- built by Emile and his dad!
Our wonderful sandpit! Maureen kindly set it up to show some of the activities we will enjoy there! Thanks Mo!
Emile looking at a frog that surprised his dad at the top of the wall!
Our garden notice board
Our garden is a magical place! I wonder who might be living here?
Our bark area makes sliding and climbing safer.
Eric tackling a very thorny problem!
Raised beds have even sown with wild flowers. We hope they will be colourful in August.
Herb and flower beds surround the benched area.
Eric climbed high up into the willow to cut and weave the canopy.
New reclaimed wooden fencing! Eric has deconstructed pallets to make this wonderful fence!
Emile loves dancing on our new stage. The blackboard can be used for drawing scenery, or for a bit of group teaching al fresco!
A new crop of pine cones has blown down in last week’s high winds providing lots of maths opportunities!
There are paths to follow and journeys to make in our fabulous outdoor classroom!
Many, many thanks to our garden’s creators and builders and to everyone who has helped us maintain our amazing garden over 20 happy years! Here’s to the next 20 years!