Community Local News Observer

Sir Captain Tom’s garden opens

To celebrate St Georges Day and also in memory of a more recent national hero the Villagers of Thruxton, Kimpton and Fyfield officially opened Captain Tom’s Garden at the Three Villages Recreation Field on Friday.

Captain Tom inspired a nation this time last year when at 99-year-old he walked 100 laps of his garden to raise money for the NHS. He hoped to raise £1000 but, in the end, raised £39m. Just as importantly he showed a nation that whatever your age, sex, or ability if you have drive and determination you can achieve great things. His legacy lives on and people across the country of all ages are doing their own challenges to raise money for vital causes. His family have also set up the Captain Tom Foundation which focuses on combating loneliness, mental health and supporting the NHS.

In March this year Kimpton resident W02 Neil Coleman of the Royal Engineers took on his own challenge to run 104 miles in 2 days. Like Captain Tom, Neil had determination and community spirt in abundance and pushed through the pain barrier to complete the challenge and raised £3200 for the community. Neil requested that some of the money be spent on a garden social area at the Sports field for all the residents to enjoy and asked that the garden be named after Captain Tom. Residents gave up their time at weekends and evenings and created a wonderful space filled with plants and tables. On Friday the Villages hosted a raffle to raise money for the Captain Tom Foundation and were able to donate £300 to this wonderful cause.

Chairman of the Sports Field Richard Smart said “Thanks to Neil’s determination and dedication we have been able to create a wonderful area for friends and family to meet and socialize and enjoy our wonderful surroundings. I suggested that we name it “Neil’s Garden” but being a humble and respectful man Neil asked instead that it be named after fellow army hero Captain Tom.

Like Captain Tom, Neil has inspired people in the village to pull together and help each other and the community spirit in the villages has thrived. I would like to thank Neil and all the villagers involved in this amazing project. In the words of Captain Sir Tom Moore “Tomorrow will be a good day”.