Garden donation to North Bute Primary

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NORTH Bute Primary School in Port Bannatyne is aiming for Green Flag status thanks to two kind-hearted village residents.

Kate and Paul Gray, who live at St Bruoc’s Manse in Marine Road, have kindly donated part of their land to accommodate a community school garden to be maintained by North Bute pupils.

Not surprisingly the Grays’ generosity has been warmly welcomed by pupils and staff alike at the school, since it ensures that all the primary schools on the island now have access to their own gardens to grow vegetables, learn about sustainable food sources, and contribute towards protecting the environment.

The garden’s development was assisted by Bute Produce, who designed and constructed the garden as a project for their on-site trainees.

In spite of the challenging economic times, local business donations were received from the Mount Stuart Trust, W. & J. Reid & Son, and Ambrisbeg Quarry – who each provided some key materials to complete the works.

It is anticipated that the garden will be open in time for the children returning after the October holiday fortnight, and will provide training sessions and classroom support to establish the garden for next season.

Billy Miller, Fyne Futures’ business manager, said: “The discussions with Kate and Paul started at eatBute 2010, but with the uncertainty of Argyll and Bute Council’s school estate review, it was difficult to implement.

“However, the spirit and sense of community in Port Bannatyne is overwhelming, and this development will add to the continued regeneration of the area and a further educational provision for the only rural school on the island.

“Kate and Paul have provided the ideal location and deserve praise, along with the local businesses for their kind donations.”

The final words come from the  Eco Group in the school, seen here visiting the garden construction for the first time, when they expressed their  thanks to Kate and Paul Gray for their donation and for the opportunity to achieve the island`s third Green Flag.

Bute Produce is part of Fyne Futures, the sustainability arm of local housing association Fyne Homes, and is funded by the Scottish Government, Leader, Wider Role, Climate Challenge Fund, and the donation of its land at Ashfield farm from the Mount Stuart Trust.