The Magheralin Church of Ireland has won a £100,000 Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Pollinator Garden Award, Environment Minister Edwin Poots has announced.
The award is a one-time grant given to a rural community organization to create a pollinator garden to celebrate the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
Magheralin Parish, Craigavon, will create a ‘reflection garden’ in the parish park which will be open to all members of the public.
Speaking on the site where the garden will be created, Mr Poots said: ‘I am pleased to announce that Magheralin Parish has been awarded the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Pollinator Garden Award of £100,000.
“The Jubilee Garden of Reflection they will create with this fund will attract bees, butterflies, wasps and moths to help pollinate local flowers and garden life.
“The garden also, of course, has the added benefit of being a wonderful space for the local community to enjoy nature and visiting wildlife.
“Encouraging pollinators benefits everyone and is especially important for the food chain, so anything that increases pollinator habitat should be welcome.
“This, together with the rural community pollination and pollination school programs offered by my department, has seen over £3million invested in encouraging our pollinators across Northern Ireland.
“The parish of Magheralin will develop a wasteland area to the rear of the church to include native and ornamental trees, wildflowers and flower beds, there will also be rest areas with woven paths through the garden to connect the different areas.
“There will be mirrored surfaces, sculptures and reflective thoughts included throughout the area.
“Creating a large-scale pollinator garden is a unique way to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.”
Lynda Surgenor, Live Here Love Here Coordinator, Keep Northern Ireland Beautiful, said: “It has been so exciting to be involved in facilitating the various pollinator grants that help transform communities and their understanding of biodiversity recovery.
“We are especially excited to see this wonderful Platinum Jubilee Pollinator Garden take shape and commend Magheralin Parish for their inspiring application.”
Magheralin Parish Rector Reverend Simon Genoe commented, “A well-known writer, David Wilkerson, said that the essence of Christianity is transformation.
“It gives us great pleasure, as a Christian community, to see a wild area of our village transformed into a beautiful place, but also to welcome the whole community in a space where it can reflect and renew itself.