Sensory walk success thanks to volunteers

THE first phase of work to a new sensory woodland walk has been completed.

Thanks to volunteers from HSBC’s Llandudno branch, members of Blind Veteran’s UK will soon be able to enjoy a peaceful and pleasant area.

Within three days a woodland area at the Blind Veterans UK Centre, based at Craig-Y-Don, Llandudno, was given a dramatic makeover.

The 17 volunteers planted herbs and flowers and helped to clear, remark and open up the old woodland walk. Seating, sensory sculptures and other wildlife friendly features will be added in the next phase to enable visually impaired members of the group to enjoy the great outdoors.

The event was supported by the Business Supporting Communities (B2C) Project, funded by the Big Lottery and delivered by North Wales County Voluntary Councils, which works to help bring businesses and communities together.

Staff at HSBC’s Llandudno Branch approached B2C regarding volunteering.

After looking at the opportunities available, as part of the B2C Volunteering Initiative, HSBC chose the Blind Veterans UK’s project.

Lucy Kew, project officer at B2C said: “The sensory woodland walk will be of tremendous value to the blind and visually impaired veterans accessing Blind Veterans UK’s support and services in Craig Y Don, along with the wider community.

“Seventeen members of staff from HSBC split over three days kindly volunteered to get phase one of the development underway and great fun was had by all.

“It’s another great example of how community groups and voluntary organisations can make best use of ‘employer supported volunteers,” she added.

Blind Veterans UK’s Volunteering Development Officer, Joanna Tann, was really pleased with the support they have received.

“We were delighted to be given the opportunity to involve HSBC volunteers in the development of our sensory woodland walk. Once completed, our Blind Veterans UK members will be able to access both evergreen and deciduous woodland areas to walk and interact with the natural environment which will provide enjoyment, therapy and relaxation”.

Joanna added: “We have had a very successful time and the difference the HSBC team has made is remarkable. As the first group of volunteers for this project they have set the benchmark pretty high for others to follow!”

Andrea Hurst, branch manager at Llandudno said building the garden was ‘hard work but well worth it’, even with the cuts and bruises.

“Six teams from HSBC worked for three days, clearing the area for planting and we can really see where the teams’ hard work has made a difference,” said Andrea.

“We’re really grateful to both Joanna and Paul from the Blind Veterans UK for their kind hospitality over the three days and are now preparing for a table top sale in HSBC Llandudno to raise much needed funds for this great cause,” she added.

The project is expected to evolve and establish over two to three years, and the area will be available for other local community groups, by agreement.

If you would like to become a volunteer or find out what volunteering events are going on in your area, visit: