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Peace Garden to be created on Keele campus to mark 75th anniversary

Construction is due to get underway on a unique new Peace Garden on Keele University’s campus after planners gave the project the green light this week. 

The garden is being built as part of Keele’s 75th anniversary celebrations, and will serve as a lasting legacy of the anniversary year for visitors to the campus, and the entire university community, to enjoy. 

Funded entirely through alumni donations, the garden will be located in-between the university Chapel and Cherry Tree Walk, with a professionally designed garden encompassing screening, benches, and natural meadow planting to provide a central place for rest and reflection, and a location for wellbeing initiatives to take place. 

The garden will also include a sculptural art installation by artist Philip Hardaker to be positioned within a central seating area, with a plaque commemorating the anniversary and the alumni donations that have made the garden possible.  

The design of the garden will also incorporate tiles with images and messages of peace, including over 150 tiles designed by visitors to this year’s Keele Day celebration – who created the tiles at interactive workshops at the event – alongside some heritage tile designs. 

Lauren Huss, Head of Alumni and Supporter Engagement at Keele University, said: “We are thrilled to announce our new Keele Peace Garden, directly next to our iconic Chapel and in celebration of our 75th Anniversary. This garden is possible only because of the generous donations from our alumni and supporters, which have fully funded its creation.  

“The idea for this garden came about in direct response to feedback from students, who felt the campus needed a space for reflection and contemplation. The central location was chosen to ensure that the garden remains as accessible as possible and that those using the space are not isolated from the activity on campus. We can’t wait to see the garden come to life over the coming months.” 

Keele students were also among those who helped shape the plans, with one saying: “I think the garden will provide a much needed quiet and protective space for students to help with their mental health. It will be a refuge for anyone who is feeling overwhelmed about their studies or the social pressures of university.

“I can imagine the garden providing a place of calming activity, as well as a place to reflect. The option for the space to be used for workshops, like creative writing and storytelling, would also make me feel part of the Keele community in a supportive and understanding environment. I am really looking forward to it.” 

 

Images courtesy of CTD Architects

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