Where to start, we had worked for this client before at their previous base. Unfortunately there was a huge fire in their mill and the entire place ended up being demolished. They eventually found this factory but unfortunately it had been let go a bit by the previous occupier. The directors of this firm are different to others, they don’t see the grounds around the factory as somewhere that just happens to be there and is an issue to look after. At their previous unit they had a large grassed area and the staff used to play football or cricket on their breaks. They wanted the same thing here. The factory had the usual areas, large car park, loading bays and the usual Laurel hedging surrounding inside a large metal security fence. But round the back, i was in for a surprise, there was a huge field and a pond, they wanted to utilise both. Their health and safety guy just wanted to fence the pond off, but they have other ideas.
The first challenge was just the sheer size of the grounds. I walked around on my first visit and i almost got lost. We also had the issue of large lorries in and out all day. We sat down wth their health and safety guy and put a plan into action. Its nothing we hadn’t done before but the risks of having staff on site, using machinery and wearing hearing protection whilst articulated lorries are manoeuvring around needed to be addressed. Its something i love though, facing challenges and working together to get around them.
The next challenge was they wildlife, they wanted to clear a section around the pond as they wanted to do some outdoor seating and create a tranquil area. It was massively overgrown with saplings and brambles. Its not pretty but its a heaven for wildlife during the nesting season so we had to bide our time, and rightly so too, were not the only ones that live on this planet.
Once all the health and safety boxes were checked and the wildlife had moved on we got to work. The laurels and bushes around the perimeter were trimmed back into shape, the weeds removed from the paths, carparks and beds, the trees given crown lifts and dead wood removed to allow vehicles to move around underneath. But the real challenge was turning the field back into a usable space and the clearance around the pond.
We set to work, thankfully our old girl, the Cub Cadet ride on mower got stuck in, we did a couple of passes on the first day and then came back 2 weeks later to go again. Slowly but surely over a period of a couple of months the green shoots of life started to show through until we fund ourselves maintaining a lush green pitch.
The pond, I must say that was enjoyable, everyone grabbed a weapon and we all got stuck in, we filled van load after van load of vegetation. The finished result is not quite the end product. The staff have planted thousands and thousands of wild flowers and bulbs, the outdoor seating is on the way and the wifi booster has been installed. Lets hope 2021 is a dry one.
I can’t wait to see this in Spring.