1 November 2017

A team of volunteers, including 40 youngsters from a Shropshire secondary school, have planted 10,000 purple crocus bulbs at Telford’s Princess Royal Hospital (PRH).

The pupils and staff from Hadley Learning Community in Telford yesterday (October 31) joined members of the Rotary Club of Telford Centre to plant the thousands of little corms in the hospital grounds.

From February/March next year, visitors to the PRH, which is run by The Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust (SaTH), will be welcomed by a stunning walkway of purple flowers. They will line either side of the footpaths from the car park down to the main hospital entrance.

The turf had been dug up in preparation for the planting before the youngsters from Year 7 were given buckets filled with hundreds of bulbs, supplied by the Rotary Club, to gently plant into the soil. The turf was then rolled back into place – with the crocuses expected to push through the ground and bloom each and every spring.

The planting project was part of Rotary International’s Purple4Polio campaign to raise awareness of their fight to eradicate polio around the world. Purple is the colour of the dye placed on the little finger on the left hand of a child to show they have been immunised against polio, hence the name Purple4Polio. With millions of children to vaccinate, this makes it easier to see who has been protected and who has not.

Sonia Roberts, President of the Rotary Club of Telford Centre, said: “It has been a great pleasure to work with SaTH and the students of Hadley Learning Community. Creating a spring flowering purple crocus walkway in the grounds of Princess Royal Hospital will benefit both staff and patients, as well as highlight the need to continue supporting the drive to eliminate polio once and for all. I would particularly like to thank the students from HLC who did such an outstanding job and we look forward to seeing the results of their labours next spring.”

Julia Clarke, Director of Corporate Governance at SaTH, said: “It is a wonderful project and we were delighted to work with Rotary to deliver it. We are so grateful for the help of the pupils and staff at the HLC who have done such a fantastic job. The sea of flowers will completely transform the entrance of the hospital both for visitors and staff.”