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Community Project Helps Young People To Grow.

A group of young people from Southport recently joined forces with local volunteers to help maintain one of the area’s most eye catching horticultural features.

The beautiful flowering borders along Rotten Row were established over 100 years ago and are a well-recognised and much appreciated feature for local residents. The borders play a prominent role in the Southport Air Show, Southport in Bloom and Southport Flower Show and are restored and maintained by a devoted group of volunteers, the Friends of Rotten Row. This week, the Friends group were joined by young people taking part in the Prince's Trust Team programme.

The Prince's Trust programme is managed by Groundwork and aimed at 16-25 year olds who are not currently in employment, education or training. It helps them to develop new skills, build their confidence and improve their employment prospects. As part of the programme, participants are required to deliver a project that benefits the local community. For their project, the Southport team decided they wanted to support the Friends of Rotten Row.

Working on this project has been a really enjoyable and rewarding experience for our team. The Friends of Rotten Row turn up three times a week, whatever the weather, to give something back to the local community. Our young people have not only been inspired by their commitment but also learned a great deal about horticulture and most importantly, about how to work well together as a team.
Amy Stark, Groundwork's Prince’s Trust Team Leader.

In July 2015 the Friends of Rotten Row achieved a prestigious Green Flag Community Award, which they retained in 2016/17. Both the Friends Group and the borders are set to play a vital role in Southport’s entry in the forthcoming Britain In Bloom Awards.

Brian Quinn, Chairman of Friends of Rotten Row said: "It was a pleasure to meet the members of Groundwork's Prince's Trust Team. One of the reasons they came along to help us was because we were 6 weeks behind in our work schedule, due to the weather conditions at the beginning of the year. The amount of work that this team did for Friends of Rotten Row was amazing. Not only did they help us clear us of many weeds, which we we're beginning to despair of, but also planted many bedding plants and prepare the ground for future planting sessions. They have helped us enormously and helped us catch up with the backlog of work. The volunteers with whom they worked with were most impressed with their work ethos and outgoing attitude. I would like to thank the Groundwork Team Leaders for their assistance in all of the time they have spent with us and look forward to any future work sessions that they may decide to work with us."

If you are or someone you know is aged 16-25 and would like to know more about how the Prince’s Trust programme could help you, please click here.

Pictured L-R: Tony Corkhill (FRR) Rebecca Brookfield (GW) Andrew Light, Nicole Hinton, Adam Hinckley, Tony Stein (FRR), Amy Stark (GW), Sue Paton (FRR)

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