We recently invited landscape architects from across the Midlands and beyond to our tree and shrub nurseries at Wildmoor Lane, Bromsgrove, for an Open Afternoon.
On Thursday, July 11th over 40 architects attended two informative presentations made by Peter Flugge of Hamburg growers Von Ehren Nurseries, and Andrew Richardson from Johnsons Nurseries of Whixley, near York. Peter spoke about semi-mature tree production and supply and Andrew gave an explanation relating to the production of shrubs for the amenity market.
Both speakers faced questions and expanded on the challenges that the Landscape Industry currently faces, among them climate change, pests and diseases and the impact that this is having on stock. The presentations were followed by a tour of our extensive tree and shrub nurseries where the guests were able to view in excess of 1500 semi-mature trees and 20,000 specimen shrubs.
Architects were given a practical demonstration of underground guying and an explanation of tree sizing where they were able to view and compare the range of tree sizes from 16 – 18cm to 45 -50 cm.
A mobile, wood fired pizza truck provided a variety of delicious homemade pizzas and salads throughout the afternoon and drinks were available from a converted horse box which served as a bar.
The event was rounded off with the arrival of Dean’s Traditional Ice Cream Van and a queue soon formed for a selection of gorgeous salted caramel, mint and vanilla with raspberry 99’s – not forgetting the chocolate flakes!!
Open Afternoon at Wildmoor Lane
On Sunday June 23rd, team members from Whiting Landscape took part in an all day ” Paddle, Plod and Pedal ” challenge to raise funds for St Richard’s Hospice, Worcester.
Following a 7am start from Pershore Youth Centre, the team began their day by rowing down the River Avon to Tewkesbury (Paddle), followed by a cross country walk on to Severn Stoke at Kempsey (Plod).
Finally, to finish the challenge, they cycled back to Pershore (Pedal) for refreshments and a well deserved hog roast!
Each task spanned between 13 – 15 miles, covering 45 miles overall through the Worcestershire countryside.
Spirits were high, with lots of team work involved and some competitiveness, but all in all they had a lot of fun. The team thought it was a really well organised event and that it was good to have the different variety of challenges. Some even said they would do it again!
Whitings managed to raise a whopping £3,793.94 for St Richard’s Hospice, smashing their target!
Until next year …………
Paddle, Plod and Pedal
On Friday 17th May volunteers from our client Prologis and Whiting teamed up together to help improve the facilities at Crick Primary School.
Crick Primary School is a mainstream school based in Northamptonshire and houses 193 children.
Our Operations Director Wayne Bridges gave a detailed brief for the day, so everyone knew what they were doing in order to complete in time.
Our brief was to rebuild, install and improve existing and new features at the school to make it a more pleasant and welcoming place for the school children to spend their play times.
The task in hand was fairly complex. A new outdoor classroom was assembled for the children and the outdoor activity area was also enlarged. New seating areas were installed and painted around the trees in the playground, so that the children had somewhere shaded to sit.
The completed improvements have benefited the School in many ways making it a more enjoyable space for the children to spend their breaks.
Wayne commented that ‘the end result is fantastic. The amount of effort and hard work that has gone into the day from each and every person is overwhelming. The appreciation from the School children was so touching it makes it all worthwhile’.
The day was a great success and the works will provide benefits and enjoyment for years to come!
Our FM Contracts Manager Todd Jeffery completed the London Marathon on Sunday 28th April and raised in excess of a whopping £1800 to help Asthma UK.
Todd has taken part in various other marathons to date which included the Brighton Marathon two weeks earlier that he completed in 3 hours 45 in preparation for the London challenge.
Supported on the day by his partner Alison, Todd recorded an incredible time of 3:44:07.
It was Todd’s first time running the London Marathon and he described it later, saying ‘What an amazing day, unforgettable experience!! The support and cheers from the crowd were incredible, kept me going the whole way’!
Well done Todd – Smashed it!
Whiting Landscape are pleased to announce we were the winners of a British Association of Landscape Industries National Principal Award at the 2018 Awards Ceremony held at London Mayfair’s Grosvenor House Hotel on Friday December 7th. The winning scheme that we submitted, in the Regeneration less than £500k category, was for the Petwood Hotel, Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire.
The Petwood Hotel is famously remembered as being the Officer’s Mess for the legendary RAF 617 Dambusters Squadron in 1944 and 1945, referred to by Second World War pilots as “……a splendid place remote from battle.” On the night of May 16th – 17th 1943, 133 aviators flew out towards Germany as part of a daring attack on the Ruhr Valley dams earning them the nickname “Dambusters”. 53 of them never returned.
The Hotel also has another claim to fame though; the fine gardens were designed by Harold Peto, one of the most celebrated landscape designers of the 20th Century. Unfortunately these historic gardens had fallen into disrepair and had been subject to vandalism and theft. Whiting Landscape were appointed by Landscape Architects Park Hood to realise the vision to “…restore and upgrade the historic gardens as designed and originally realised in 1913 – 14.” The extensive undertaking was to provide a “…functional, beautiful setting for the Hotel throughout the seasons”, restoring the gardens sympathetically and with preservation of the context and setting of the Grade 2 Listed Building.
Whiting, won this prestigious Principal Award for the rebuilding of the Temple of Atalanta at Petwood; restoration works to the Terrace and long walk and the Dutch Sunken Garden; extensive new drainage and the installation of new lawns and entrance piers.
We would like to thank everyone who contributed to the regeneration of the Petwood Gardens and especially Emma Brealey, Director of the Hotel, for all her support and assistance throughout the project.
What a way to end 2018!
As summer has come to an end and the nights are drawing in, those frosty mornings will soon be upon us. Here at Whiting we offer a Winter Maintenance programme for our clients, to suit all their winter needs.
Covering a range of sites nationwide Whiting ensures that car parks, loading bays, roadways and pedestrian walkways are all mechanically gritted when the need arises. Our national operation provides a proactive gritting and snow clearance service, covering sites seven days a week.
Weather reports are analysed regularly and notifications are e mailed direct to the client each day. Whiting consistently monitors national weather reports and maintains a regular site presence to ensure a safe working environment for staff, customers, deliveries and visitors.
For your Winter Maintenance programme please email Jon Murphy from our Maintenance team at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact him on 07805 159 403.
On September 11th, three members of the Whiting team were invited to take part in a charity sailing day, hosted by our client Winvic Construction.
The event took place in The Solent off Portsmouth and twenty six boats participated in 3 races, each covering 6 -7 miles. Every race lasted for a duration of approximately 45 minutes with a crew of 10 to each boat.
With the wind blowing a force 6, the conditions were quite challenging and this resulted in several collisions around the buoys.
Our Financial Director, experienced and seasoned sailor Laurence Upcott commented, “It was a fun, yet challenging day and a great opportunity for team building with other suppliers.”
The day was in aid of The Bee Hive, a Northampton based charity chosen by Winvic. Although the event involved a lot of fun, it also helped raise a fantastic amount of money for the charity – The Beehive being a post 16 vocational setting for young people with Special Educational Needs.
On Thursday 13th September 5 intrepid members of the Whiting team took part in the Prologis 100k Cycle Challenge around Warwickshire, to raise money for Land Aid and Trinity Specialist College.
Their route began at Ardencote Manor in Warwick, and they made their way through the beautiful countryside and various little villages including Wootton Wawen and dipping into Flyford Flavell in Worcestershire, a total of 4 hours 30 minutes in the saddle.
Over £13,000 has been collected in sponsorship from all those who participated.
We’re delighted to have been part of the team that has managed to raise so much cash for the two charities set to benefit from the challenge. The Property Industry charity Land Aid aims to make the future better for homeless young people and Trinity Specialist College provides a Further Education day placement Centre supplying up to 48 weeks’ provision for students with learning difficulties, challenging behaviours, disabilities and autism.
Two very worthy causes so well done to all who took part!
On Saturday 14th July 2018 12 members of the Whiting team set a task upon themselves to walk 26 miles in a day as way of a group challenge.
They had an early start of 6am where they began their walk at Ladybower Dam, Hope Valley, in the beautiful surroundings of the Peak District. The trial began with a vertical climb, which was pretty tough going as they had just started out! It was worth it, as the views were breath taking once they reached the top. The idea of this challenge was for it to be more of a personal achievement and the team managed to complete it in 11 and half hours – despite everyone averaging at least three blisters on each foot!
60,000 steps after setting out, our Commercial Manager Matthew Murphy said:
‘Tremendous effort by all, we are now into our 8th year of doing a Whiting Challenge, they really don’t seem to be getting any easier! Bring on the next one!’
Peak District Challenge 2018
On Friday 18th May volunteers from our client Prologis and Whiting teamed up together to help restore Happyfields Animal Sanctuary.
Happyfields was founded 7 years ago by Christine Bowles and provides a home for both unwanted and rescue animals. The sanctuary relies heavily on sponsorship and donations and with our help it made the process easier and quicker to implement the final improvements they needed.
Love Brum is a charity that engages with local people and businesses to build a better Birmingham. Love Brum asked Prologis to support Happyfields on Impact Day. Whiting were happy to come on board and help Prologis with this challenge.
Our brief was to rebuild, install and improve existing new features at the sanctuary to make it a more pleasant and welcoming place for visitors and for the animals to live in.
Our Operations Director Wayne Bridges gave a detailed brief for the day, so everyone knew what they were doing in order to get everything completed. The weather was definitely on our side, it was a glorious day, the sun shining and everyone was keen and eager to get started.
Happyfields encompasses an overall area of 11,000m². Most of the area needed attention and works began with installing an 18m walk way leading up to a decked terraced picnic area, (which we needed to construct) and the entrance to visit the animals at Happyfields. Creating this pathway has made it more accessible for wheelchair users and pushchairs. A new shelter was put together to keep the animals safe and warm at night. Up to 230 linear meters of fencing was installed in various parts of the sanctuary fields ensuring that all the animals are now safe and secure, especially around the chicken coop and pond, to keep out any unwanted visitors! New gates were installed at the beginning of the new pathway and entrance leading into another field, helping to make the area more secure and safe for visitors and the residents of Happyfields!
Car parking was limited at the sanctuary; it was challenging and unsafe for visitors to park as it is located on such a busy main road. A fenced car park has now been created off the main road into Happyfields allowing easier access.
Finally, a new information and welcome sign were hand drawn, painted and installed by members of Prologis and Whiting. The public can now easily find the sanctuary, as it proved to be quite difficult to locate in the past.
The completed improvements have benefited Happyfields in many ways making it a more welcoming and pleasant place to visit. Founder Christine Bowles was overwhelmed and happy with the work that had been completed. She commented that she was…“Over the moon. It all looks amazing!”
Our Operations Director Wayne Bridges said ‘the end result was fantastic. The amount of effort and hard work that had gone into the day from each and every person was overwhelming. The appreciation from Chris was so touching it makes it all worthwhile’. The day was a great success!