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Inverurie groups win national glory


By Kyle Ritchie

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Three groups in the Inverurie area have been recognised nationally for the work they have done in improving the environment of their communities amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Inverurie Environmental Improvement Group, the town's Port Road Day Centre and The Pitscurry Project in Pitcaple were all presented with awards by environmental charity Keep Scotland Beautiful at an online event.

Each year the charity runs two community environmental improvement programmes in partnership with the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS); the competitive Beautiful Scotland campaign and the It’s Your Neighbourhood initiative.

Inverurie Environmental Improvement Group was recognised in the Beautiful Scotland scheme, while Port Road Day Centre and The Pitscurry Project received certificates in It's Your Neighbourhood.

The accolades are for the work volunteers and supporters managed to carry out to brighten up and pull their neighbourhoods together during the ongoing health pandemic.

Inverurie Environmental Improvement Group (IEI) supports the local community by providing an array of colour throughout the year with baskets and planters in the town centre; volunteering opportunities for young and old; and engages with and supports service users with special needs.

It also supports sheltered housing residents maintain their gardens; organises the annual best garden competition; supports eco-groups in schools; and helped create the new Ury Riverside Park.

The IEI committee and volunteers have worked tirelessly this year to put on a floral display at the Town Hall and throughout Inverurie town centre.

Inverurie Town Hall is the centrepiece of the summer floral display.
Inverurie Town Hall is the centrepiece of the summer floral display.

The hanging baskets were put up with the assistance of the committee, Pitscurry staff members and family groups of local Rotarians.

The Covid-19 crisis has been a challenge for the group this year which has resulted in fewer hanging baskets being put up.

A local nursery grew the trailing surfinia plants especially for IEI to put in the hanging baskets. Watson’s Garden and Hardware Centre sourced the non-stop begonias for the summer display.

The group's work has been spearheaded by IEI vice-chairman Ian Mitchell who said: “I take my hat off to all the groups who got involved with IEI in making Inverurie Town Centre bloom again this year especially Inverurie Rotary Club members and the staff and service users at the Pitscurry Project.

Inverurie Environmental Improvement Group vice-chairman Ian Mitchell has spearheaded the work.
Inverurie Environmental Improvement Group vice-chairman Ian Mitchell has spearheaded the work.

"The annual hanging baskets with the summer and winter bedding displays in the planters bring a lot of pleasure to Inverurie residents and visitors to the town. We hope it brings some cheer as the town’s economy slowly recovers as lockdown restrictions are eased."

Port Road Day Centre is attended by two groups, adults with learning and physical disabilities and older adults.

The centre has provided areas of the garden for its service users, for either recreational use to relax in or to help with the planning, planting and maintenance aspects.

The Pitscurry Project provides day services for adults with learning disabilities. It grows its own organic produce from seed, and uses this produce in its on site café which is open to the public.

The group plants up hanging baskets for Inverurie town centre every summer and is involved in maintaining gardens in the wider community.

Service users of all abilities attend the project where they are supported by a team of staff and volunteers.

CEO of Keep Scotland Beautiful Barry Fisher said: “We have been amazed by the desire of communities, volunteers and local authorities to stay connected, motivated and inspired by each other, all with a steadfast determination to do things to make a difference, even if this had to be done differently this year."

Any groups that would like to join the network in 2021 or get more information can go online and visit www.keepscotlandbeautiful.org/BeautifulScotland or www.keepscotlandbeautiful.org/IYN



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