Tucked away in a corner at the Ferrymead Heritage Park is the Memorial Rose Garden that commemorates the 21 Addington Railway workers who lost their lives in World War II. A small group of enthusiasts quietly work away to keep the memory of these workers alive.
Jude Turner, a member of Heritage Roses NZ, and her fellow enthusiasts have been working in the Memorial Rose Garden for the last decade. “Originally the Memorial Fountain, which was circled by old roses, was at the site of the former Addington Workshops. During the 1990s when the area was cleared for the Picton to Bluff railway line, the Memorial Garden fell into disrepair. Given many of the roses date back to the early 1900s, Heritage Roses NZ was keen to find a safe place for the both the roses and the memorial.
Ferrymead Heritage Park came to the rescue, and now a stunning array of some 90 different roses can be found. The small group of workers, primarily from Heritage Roses NZ and Ferrymead Lions Women’s Group, meet fortnightly to tend the garden. “We have had to source new rose bushes to replace those that didn’t survive, and like any garden there is always work that needs to be done” said Jude. “We couldn’t keep up with the pruning, spraying, fertilizing, and mulching without the help of others. John Craig bikes over from New Brighton to mow the lawns, IDEA Services provides helpers when it comes to composting and mulching time, and John Matsis from Ferrymead Heritage Park has made 21 beautiful metal roses for the garden, to name just a few. Recently we successfully approached the Sumner Ferrymead Foundation for a grant to purchase fertilizer.
Sumner Ferrymead Foundation Trustee Jane Paterson said the Foundation was keen to support the Memorial Garden. “We are all about ‘Locals helping Locals’, and want to support both community groups and individuals in our catchment area – from Taylors Mistake through to Heathcote and around to Brookhaven. Here we have a group of volunteers who are providing their time and skills to ensure a local Memorial Garden thrives, so it made sense to provide them with a grant. In the past we have supported a diverse range of community groups – from Taylors Mistake Surf Lifesaving Club and Sumner Community Gardens through to Redcliffs Library and Mt Pleasant Community Centre. Where we can, we like to provide some level of support.
The Memorial Garden is at its best come spring and is it’s worth making time to wander around it when you next visit the Ferrymead Heritage Park. But if that’s not an option, then have a look at the Poppy Places website – a Places of Remembrance project to ensure we never forget - where the Memorial Garden is featured.
If you are interested in supporting your local community and would like to help maintain the Memorial Garden email Jude Turner at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or, if you would like to become a trustee of the Sumner Ferrymead Foundation contact the trustees at email@example.com
For futher information contact:
Jude Turner, Ferrymead Heritage Park Memorial Garden ..... 384 9320
Jane Paterson, Sumner Ferrymead Foundation ..... 022 657 3206