North West care provider, Belong, and award-winning garden designer, Carolyn Hardern, joined forces with the Morris Feinmann Homes Trust to create a remembrance garden commemorating victims of the Holocaust.
The garden – Never Forget, Never Again – was unveiled at RHS Tatton 2016, where it was awarded a prestigious silver-gilt medal from the Royal Horticultural Society. The garden was visited by Holocaust survivor, Dr. Peter Kurer, Alan Wilkins and Helen Lister, All three are former chairmen of the Morris Feinmann Homes Trust.
Following the show, the remembrance garden is being relocated to Belong Morris Feinmnan, a care village for the Jewish community under construction in Didsbury, Manchester.
Tracy Paine, Director of Operations at Belong, added: “We have worked closely with Carolyn on a number of design projects and were delighted to sponsor her RHS garden this year. The garden will provide a stunning, peaceful space for Belong Morris Feinmann customers and the project underlines our commitment to ensuring our villages feature high quality outdoor spaces, with valuable therapeutic and practical benefits to our customers and especially those with dementia.”
The remembrance garden is created in a circular design, with a mass of white Tranquillity roses providing a seamless area of contemplation. The white is interspersed with blue water forget-me-nots, suggestive of Israeli national colours.
At the garden’s centre, an art installation featuring porcelain lilies with copper stems rises from a pool of reflective water. Birch trees line the outer section of the garden, providing dappled light through their leaves, and are underplanted with white flowers. Finally, cubed oak seating evokes the Holocaust memorial in Berlin and provides space for meditation.
Carolyn Hardern added: “This is a simple but highly effective garden, which relies on symmetry to create a poignant memorial to victims of the Holocaust, and we hope it will resonate strongly with Belong’s customers.”
Belong Morris Feinmann is due to open in summer 2017. The new village will offer 24-hour specialist nursing and dementia care to older people in Manchester’s Jewish community, thanks to an exciting partnership between the Morris Feinmann Homes Trust and Belong.
The construction of the garden was undertaken by Novus, a not-for profit large scale social enterprise, part of the LTE group, delivering education, training and employability in more than 100 sites within prisons, Approved Premises and Community Payback.
Novus provided a six-man community payback team who completed the hard landscaping and planting, working tirelessly to ensure the finished garden provided a perfectly symmetrical, level and aesthetically pleasing oasis of tranquillity.
 Dr. Peter Kurer, retired dentist and formerly a child refugee from Vienna, moved to Manchester in 1938 after being saved from the Holocaust by the Quaker movement in a mass effort to rescue Jews from Germany and Austria. In the years since, Peter has dedicated significant time to commemorating the work of the Quakers and ensuring that older members of the Jewish community felt safe and secure as they grew older. His work was recognised by his appointment as Honorary Life President of the Trust.