University honours campaigner for carers’ services

Thursday 26 September 2013
Vice-Chancellor Professor Martin Hall with local children who worked on the garden.

School pupils, businesses and social organisations were at the University of Salford yesterday (Wednesday 25 September) to create a special garden for local carers which is in memory of Terry Flaherty - a tireless campaigner for carers’ services.

Terry, 78, from Walkden, helped to found the Salford Carers’ Centre in 1999 and won the Mayor’s Citizen Award in 2002 for his contribution to the local community. He was inspired by his daughter Sherina who has learning difficulties.

Terry was a member of the School of Nursing, Midwifery & Social Work’s ‘Users and Carers’ Group’ of local people who use their experience to give advice on the School’s teaching programme. Senior Lecturer Dr Julie Wray decided to create the garden in honour of the hard work that the group has put into shaping health and social care courses over the last eight years, and as a memorial to Terry’s legacy.

The garden in the courtyard of the Mary Seacole Building will be a tranquil area for the Users and Carers’ Group, staff and students to take time out of a busy day. It has come to life with the help of not-for-profit social enterprise Tree Inspired and award-winning gardener Joan Mulvenna of Garden Design Manchester.

Also on hand was Business in the Community (BITC) – a charity which works with over 800 UK companies to improve their impact on society through corporate responsibility initiatives. BITC enlisted Year 8 pupils from Buile Hill Visual Arts College, All Hallows RC Business and Enterprise College, Irlam & Cadishead College and Oasis Academy MediaCityUK to get digging and planting with employees from DWF and Grant Thornton.

Garden themes include edible plants such as seasonal herbs, leaves and vegetables; medicinal plants such as lavender; and a selection of wild English flowers. A canopy forms a place of shelter to enjoy the garden in all weathers.

Dr Wray said: “The garden is symbolic of our commitment to the Users and Carers’ Group and public engagement. All of our students meet the group and it’s good to give something back to these very selfless, altruistic people. Terry was such a kind and genuine man and we miss him greatly.”

The garden will be maintained by staff, students and volunteers. Julie Wray can be contacted at j.wray@salford.ac.uk or 0161 295 7296 for more information or donations.