Pope Francis called Christians to build the Unity of the Church as 'Living Stones'.

When we look to prepare a building we need firm foundations, as Christians, the cornerstone of the Church’s unity is Jesus. We lay our bricks over the cornerstone with the power of the Holy Spirit, who is able to make 'living Stones' from bricks.

The St Augustine's Garden of Peace is a celebration of our school community. It is not only an aesthetically pleasing area at the front of school, but also a sanctuary where members of the school community can reflect and contemplate. We use our paving stones to remind us of our responsibility as Christians to be 'living stones' in the school community and the wider world.

The Story of Our Journey

Path

The inspiration for the Garden came from an informal discussion amongst teachers at an annual HCPT charity ball, hosted by RE and Drama teacher Mr. Williams. Discussions were centered around visiting the Wordsworth Daffodil Garden at Grasmere, adopting a similar idea at school to develop the area near the front entrance. This vision opened up the opportunity for a journey of discovery and faith for both adults and children at St Augustine's.

Enterprise

Garden Measure

We wanted to give all of our 'stakeholders', the opportunity to leave their legacy at school by purchasing an engraved paving stone. This would require project management and fund raising on a huge scale. With no funding in place, we asked a team of pupils to take part in the Tenner Challenge. Part of Young Enterprise, the Tenner Challenge presents schools with the opportunity to give pupils a small investment of £10 which they need to use to make a bigger return. Our team of 4 pupils used their budget of only £40 to buy marketing material for the stones. They have managed to successfully fund a pathway of approximately 300 stones.

The team of pupils also found sponsorship for the Garden. They have negotiated with local businesses to get sponsorship and a discounted rate for the material and construction of the Garden. This has included:

Meet Neil

Aquaspira – sponsorship for the engraving

North West Reclamation – sponsorship and supply of the stones

Holden Clough Farm – sponsorship of plants

B&G Sears Ltd – construction of the garden based on the complex design

Ken Howe Natural Stone Supplies – discounted rate for the engraving

 Plant Tree

Negotiation with the external community developed the emotional intelligence of the children and was a good example of preparing pupils for 'life beyond school'.

Design/construction

National A

The design of the Garden was taken on by a team of creative pupils. This included many discussions as well as a trip to the National Memorial Arboretum where pupils collected ideas on landscapes, heritage and sculpture. We were astounded at the enthusiasm and dedication of this team of pupils; the design is truly magnificent! These students 'dared to dream' and created the shape of the school badge within the pathway, making their vision a reality.

Horticultural design

Design Consultation

The school horticultural group were given the opportunity to work with a former pupil and award winning landscaper, John Foley. John's business, Holden Clough Nursery at Bolton-by-Bowland has triumphed by coming away with the prestigious RHS Tatton Gold medal at Tatton Park Flower Show on more than one occasion. Our pupils were inspired by working with John on landscaping the garden and can hopefully leave this experience, considering horticulture as a career.

 Service 1

Please feel free to visit our Garden at the front of school and reflect.

 Cross

Pope Francis said:

Even Paul was afraid at times and needed reassurance from God, “It happens to all of us in life, to have some ‘fear.’”

“When we are in the dark” and “we do not see anything” we need to make an act of faith in the Lord, “I know, Lord that this sorrow will turn to joy. I do not know how, but I know it!” It is “the joy that remains”, although “hidden in some moments of life, we do not feel it in bad times, it comes later: a joy in hope.”

“How many sick, who are at the end of life, in pain, have that peace of soul. This is the seed of joy, this is the joy of hope and peace.”

“Do you have peace of soul in times of darkness, in times of trouble, in times of persecution, when everyone else rejoices at your suffering? Do you have peace?”

Service 2

We would like you to reflect and discover that “If you have peace, you have the seed of joy that will come later."

Cross Poppy