Shropshire Star

Garden project on steam pioneer site begins

A project to turn the site of a former Shropshire foundry where the world’s first fare-paying passenger locomotive was built into a community garden has begun.

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Plans to turn the Hazeldine foundry site in Bridgnorth into a community garden were announced last year after Bridgnorth Aluminium, which employs around 450 people in the market town, who said they wanted to turn the former foundry into a "beautiful and tranquil" garden.

The Bandon Road site is where 18th century engineer Richard Trevithick built his first-fee paying steam locomotive 'Catch Me Who Can' and currently belongs to Bridgnorth Town Council.

Bridgnorth Aluminium, which is investing a a six figure sum into the project has entered into a partnership with Bridgnorth Town Council, Bridgnorth Community Garden Project , Bridgnorth Civic Society , The Trevithick Society , Bridgnorth Rugby Club and local residents to create the garden.

The company said it came up with the idea after being asked to do something to remember the Duke of Edinburgh and Her Majesty the Queen, following their death, by the owners of its group, which have a long-standing connection with the Greek royal family.

Prince Philip, who died in 2021, was born in Corfu.

Work to convert the garden, which has been designed by Mike Russell Garden Design and the main contractor is local company Arcox Landscaping from Telford with overall project management by Shropshire Wildlife Trust, began on Monday.

The main landscaping work for the garden is expected to be completed in the next four weeks.

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