New forget-me-not garden at Ard Jerkyll

The garden

The garden

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A volunteer workforce from a local company have helped the Manx Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ManxSPCA) to create a memorial garden at their headquarters.

The organisation wished to create a ‘Forget Me Not’ garden at Ard Jerkyll in Foxdale to help pet owners come to terms with the loss of a pet.

A cat memorial garden already existed at the site, but the ManxSPCA hoped it could be extended to create a memorial garden for all pets, and all owners.

An appeal for funds caused technology company Microgaming to step up, not only providing financial support for the project but also supplying an entire team of volunteers to help make it happen.

ManxSPCA’s Margaret Mansfield said: ‘We were looking for a donation so that we could purchase the necessary equipment and pay for labour.

‘We asked Microgaming for funding, but what we received was far more than we expected. They agreed to send a dedicated team of employees every weekend for several months!

‘They designed and built the entire garden from scratch, which now takes pride of place at Ard Jerkyll.

‘I can’t thank them enough for their effort and commitment.’

The four-month project included a clear-out of the entire site, the construction of a new trellis wall, a new pathway, archways and the repotting of plants.

Volunteers, including 13 staff members and several skilled labourers, spent a total of 20 days working at the site.

In addition several local artists are currently working on sculptures for the garden, to be added in the coming months.

Roger Raatgever, CEO of Microgaming, added: ‘I’m extremely proud of our team who took it upon themselves to take on this project.

‘It’s easy for a company to make a donation to a charity; it’s a lot harder to be able to dedicate time.

‘Now complete, the garden looks brilliant; what a fantastic achievement.’

Following months of hard work, the garden officially opened to the public in August.

For more information on the ManxSPCA or the Forget Me Not Garden, please contact Margaret Mansfield on 07624 480368.

The ManxSPCA maintain kennels, a cattery, a small animal unit, an aviary as well as a seal pen at their dedicated facility at Ard Jerkyll.

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