Sunday, November 11, 2012

At last.....

Well it took 4 years almost to the day of sheer bloody minded determination. I never in my wildest imagining thought it would take that long, and cause so much heart ache. But then I also underestimated the impact it had. I am talking about the Combat Stress Therapeutic Garden, the concept for which I first had in August 2008 when I approached Toby Elliott, then Chief Executive of Combat Stress. A mad woman on a mission I must have appeared at the time, as we bullied people for donations, assistance and help. But then PTSD is a bit like that really. It raises its head when you least expect it, isn't easy to deal with, is little understood in reality and means different things to different people. What the garden did was help raise awareness of the problem. We handed out about 18,000 leaflets at the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show in 2010, and bearing in mind we only probably gave away 1 leaflet to every three people who walked through we did amazingly well.
And now the garden is where it is supposed to be; in the courtyard at Combat Stress' headquarters in Leatherhead. And it has transformed a barren, bare, bleak space into something fit for healing and peace. Every person involved in this, especially the unsung heroes, anonymous donors, hard working behind the scenes staff take a bow. You deserve it.


  1. Well done! So proud to hear you've managed to finish it - but I knew you would, you've a will of iron. Now get some rest!!!!!

  2. You can talk lady! You make me feel completely inadequate as to what you have achieved against the odds...... Having said that your compliment is very much appreciated.