Mass planting for million bulbs project

Sidmouth benefactor Keith Owen

Sidmouth benefactor Keith Owen - Credit: Archant

Scores of volunteers are expected to join a bulb planting tomorrow (Saturday) to help realise the dream of Sidmouth’s most generous benefactor.

The Sid Vale Association’s (SVA) goal is to fulfil the dying wish of Keith Owen, who left the town a £2.3million legacy, and see a valley covered in flowers.

Sports teams, schools and community groups have all been backing the million bulb project, planting more than 100,000 since September.

SVA chairman Handel Bennett said: “We are inviting the community to help by joining with others to plant bulbs together.

“Everyone is invited to visit Peak Hill to play a part in this historic event. We intend to plant 20,000 bulbs in a single day!”

Over the last year the small working party has contacted land owners for planting consent and selected more than 50 sites.

They have met with some 20 voluntary groups and ordered 150,000 bulbs from British nurseries, so the project is already well under way.

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Handel added: “We are a community engaged in a single purpose – to play its part in creating the Valley of a Million Bulbs. We hope it will fulfil Keith’s hope of an iconic spectacle to be enjoyed by both residents and visitors.”

Registration for tomorrow’s mass planting is at Peak Hill or via Planting will take place on Peak Hill and at Jacob’s Ladder.

Anyone taking part should wear stout shoes and suitable clothing, and if possible should take a small gardening spade, gloves and a drink.