AXA IM & Rutherford School Garden Project 2018

Here at Rutherford we kicked off the new school year in full swing with our AXA IM project. We are so proud of what we have achieved with the very generous help from AXA IM this year.

Over the years we have kindled a special relationship with AXA IM and the volunteers that visit our school once a year over 3 days to help with an outdoor project that not only enrich our pupils outdoor environment but also enhance it.

Rutherford School is a very special school. Here every little achievement is big and celebrated! We have had many friends over the years, some who have passed, some who have left to journey on the path to adulthood and others who have simply moved away. Staff and pupils alike are held dear to our hearts and we think fondly of our Rutherford family. To celebrate this we have designed and created, with the help of AXA IM, Jack Pecthey and our very talented staff, a Friendship Garden.

Our Friendship Garden is not only an outdoor learning area, it is also a place where we can get close to nature, listen to falling water, smell the seasons and remember our friends – current and past.

We decided to base the design of the friendship garden around circles. Our school anthem is the “Circle of Love” and with this in mind we looked to Kandinsky and his circle designs for inspiration. We designed circular tiles and a wooden button Tree of Life to create two works of art with our pupils. We also purchased a very large stainless steel sphere water fountain with the small grant we were awarded and was eligible to apply for after Mary Arthur won the prestigious Jack Petchey Leadership Award.

Jack, partner of one of our colleagues gave up two days of his valuable time to build a bespoke pergola while our talented caretaker Mark, created a block paved area with bench seating around a waterfall garden feature situated next to the pupils entrance. Our volunteers from AXA IM worked very hard helping us to install our new sphere fountain, weeding, planting and cleaning. They also got hands on with our art project and helped our pupils to paint and finish off some of the art work. Each volunteer added a wooden circle to our Family tree. As with all big projects we just ran out of time and wasn’t able to finish the Tree of Life. It only needs some finishing touches. We are looking forward to showcasing it as soon as it is hung next to the fountain! Please visit our Gallery to view more images of the project and what we got up to on the day!

We would like to extend a big thank you to everybody who was involved in the project and look forward to welcome AXA IM in the spring term next year!