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Southport Reporter®

Edition No. 171

Date:- 09 October 2004

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ON Wednesday (6 October), people aged from 7 to 78 transformed a derelict plot into a new urban faith garden in inner city Liverpool at St Christopher's Church, Lorenzo Drive, Norris Green. The pupils, parishioners and pensioners gather to harvest the first crop that included monster foot long green beans, tomatoes, beetroot and potatoes - which will then be used for blind scouse soup. A thanksgiving service was then held shortly after, followed by servings of freshly made blind scouse scoup!

Rev Mark Coleman, said:- "Our garden had become neglected and needed a transformation. But we just didn't want it to look pretty. We wanted it to play a wider role, that touched on spiritual and physical health. Gardening is good for the body and soul, so we hit upon the idea of an urban faith garden that would be open to all, be it for a bit of gardening or quiet reflection and prayer whatever their faith. We've hung up prayers and reflections on the trees and schoolchildren and pensioners from sheltered housing have all chipped in. It's only in its first year but in a small way it's already brought the community together. After all the hard work that's gone into it, the soup tomorrow will be the sweetest thing I've tasted in a long time."

Councillor Warren Bradley, Executive Member for Leisure and Culture, said:- "This was a small Faith In One city project, but like a small acorn it is growing out of all recognition. The garden is now an established feature of the local community and is a real source of pride. It is helping to bring people of all ages together, teach them gardening skills and sow seeds about how to respect our environment and utilise our own gardens. The new weekly café will help further develop this togetherness. This is a classic example of how someone's small idea can help change people's lives in a major way and create a legacy for others to enjoy."

Lap times at lunchtime

LOCAL Telewest Broadband employee Clare Siddall, from the cable company's national customer contact centre in Liverpool, is swapping her round of lunchtime sandwiches for a run around the Albert Dock, in an attempt to slip into shape for the Liverpool Ladies 10 km race. 

Kind-hearted Clare, a customer service representative, is running the mini marathon on Sunday 10 October to raise vital funds for high profile charity the British Heart Foundation. 

Regular jogging jaunts around the quayside have turned many local retailers' heads and have even inspired her colleagues to dine al fresco and provide vocal encouragement for the fanatic fundraiser. 

Clare (36), who lives in Formby, says:- "The opportunity to raise money for a worthy cause such as the British Heart Foundation has been the main motivation behind my midday jogs - that and my colleagues! 

At Telewest Broadband we're always doing something to raise money for local and national charities and everyone at the customer contact centre has been fantastic - not only donating their support, but valuable cash too." 

To date, Clare has raised more than £300 for the charity, which provides support for people suffering from heart and circulatory diseases. 

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