TV gardener to open Byes project

A star from TV’s Gardeners’ World will be on hand to launch the Friends of the Byes (FOTB) biodiversity project this weekend.

The group want to get as many people along to the start of the scheme, which also aims to help improve usage within the parkland.

Celebrity gardener Anne Swithinbank, who is from East Devon, will be the special guest at the event tomorrow afternoon, where guests will also get to meet local groups involved with improving wildlife in the Sid Valley.

The Gardeners’ World presenter will launch the event by planting another tree in the Byes community orchard.

FOTB chairman Michael Horsnell said: “It’s great that Anne will be with us to help celebrate the completion of this stage of improvements.

“She is such a bubbly personality and an accomplished gardener, we feel very honoured.”

The friends have also been busy this year planting trees, wildflowers and installing benches to make gentle improvements to the riverside parkland in the heart of Sidmouth.

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There will also be a children’s wildlife hat competition with prizes and adults are invited to wear something wildlife related to join in the fun.

Alongside the launch will be stream dipping sessions, orienteering events, bug hunts, badge making and other games for all ages.

People are invited to take their own picnic, but there will be food and drink available, as well as a plant and wildflower seed sale.

The launch party starts at noon, and runs until 4pm, centred on the pair of evergreen oaks in The Lawn area of the Byes.