Friendship Club goes wild about wildflower planting

Ballynure and District Friendship Club is joining forces with the local council and community gardening groups up and down the country to celebrate the launch of the Royal Horticultural Society’s 2012 Britain in Bloom campaign.

Ballynure residents will be planting thousands of wildflower seeds in the village at 1.30pm this Saturday (April 14), as part of a UK-wide bid to see 20,000 square metres of land turned into new wildlife havens.

The event will tie in with the launch of the Translink’s Ulster in Bloom year, the beginning of National Gardening Week and also to help celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.

Translink’s Ulster in Bloom is part of the United Kingdom’s largest horticultural campaign, working to improve where people reside, through community gardening initiatives. Groups are encouraged to showcase their horticultural expertise, community involvement and environmental responsibility through gardening projects, ready for judges’ visits in the summer.

Ballynure and District Friendship Club meanwhile, has been in existence for five years now and seeks to provide opportunities for older people, namely those over 50, many of whom live alone or are in an isolated part of this rural community, to meet together, get to know each other and spend time in each other’s company.

It gives older people a chance to be entertained and informed about interesting events, musical shows, activities or hobbies, and sets out to ensure that those within this age bracket, many of whom are widowed, divorced or single, are still able to get out and about to see, enjoy and experience the many attractions and entertainment that Northern Ireland has to offer. The group meets on the last Friday of every month in Ballynure Presbyterian Minor Hall and is grant aided by Newtownabbey Borough Council and DRD Community Transport Initiative.

“We’re really looking forward to sowing the wildflower seeds, as this is the first time we have tried to create a wildflower area and we can’t wait see the results in the summer,” said Richard Wallace from the group.

“There are other things to do around the village so it would be good to have a few more volunteers to help with this year’s entry. We’ve had great help in this venture from Margaret Lindsay and Joe Beggs from Newtownabbey Borough Council,” he added.

New members are welcome to join the Ballynure and District Friendship Club, and also to join in and help with the planting of the wildflower seeds. Contact Richard Wallace on 028 9332 3715 for more information.