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Everybody needs good neighbours

2 June 2017

Cherwell Close 1
Two inspirational residents from Cherwell Close - a retirement housing estate in Croxley Green, Hertfordshire - were celebrating today as they unveiled their communal gardens during Volunteers Week.

For several years, Hanover Housing Association residents Pauline Batten (88) and Keith Alford (85) have set about creating a fine community spirit by breathing new life into the estate and turning the communal gardens into an area for relaxation, contemplation and serenity. To do this, they established a gardening group partly funded by Hanover’s Greenshoots fund, a small grant aimed at improving the wellbeing of residents.

During their time at the Hanover property, Keith and Pauline have worked tirelessly to improve the gardens by renewing and reshaping hedges, designing a special ‘rest a while’ section, planting new flowerbeds and creating easily accessible gardens for the enjoyment of their neighbours.

In addition to their gardening prowess, the dynamic duo have also organised day trips and hosted a range of activities, including fish and chip suppers, Sunday lunches, bingo, morning teas and celebratory festivities.

Candy Sands, Estate Manager for Hanover, said: 'For as long as I can remember, Keith and Pauline have provided fantastic support to residents. Even though they are both in their eighties they seem to have the energy of twenty year olds! They go shopping and take residents to appointments they would otherwise not be able to get to. They are willing to lend a hand without exception - they’re unbelievable and are truly an inspiration to all.'

Keith and Pauline’s efforts have recently been recognised by the Croxley Green Parish Council when they were presented with the Hazel Seeley Award. The award is named after former Parish Councillor, Hazel Seeley, who served continuously on the Croxley Green Parish Council for 18 years.

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