It's a nurturing hand that sees Nurture Landscapes win its fourth Grounds Maintenance Limited Public Access award at the British Association of Landscape Industries (BALI) National Landscape Awards.
Reesink's Alastair Rowell, right, presented the award to, from left: Neil Collett, building and technical services manager from CBRE One Snowhill; Stephen Packman, Nurture's regional manager; Trevor Caplin, Nurture's contracts manager and Alan Berzi, Nurture's head groundsman
The award, which is sponsored by Toro and Reesink Turfcare, the exclusive distributor in the UK and Ireland for Toro groundscare machinery, recognises all sorts of grounds maintenance, and the project that won is not only a vertical space in the form of one of Europe's largest living walls but has the added challenge of being alongside the Metro viaduct wall next to Snow Hill Station in Birmingham making access somewhat tricky!
Matt Monckton, regional manager at Nurture Landscapes, says: "This site is incredibly challenging with the green wall running just a few metres adjacent to the Metro line. Our planned overhaul visits can only be carried out in the small hours when the live lines are powered down which happens on just two weekends a year and we have to bring in free-standing artificial lights, which in itself is a major task."
At 220m long and 7m high with 604m2 of plants, it's an eye-catching feature. As well as plants, the living wall incorporates decorative perforated aluminium panels designed to capture artificial and natural daylight. Programmable uplighters bring the wall to life at night and create constantly changing patterns and the illusion of depth and movement.
Matt continues: "The whole feature has moisture sensors built into the green wall which are internet connected and alert us quickly to any irrigation issues across the face of the whole wall. In the evening a cutting-edge LED lighting system operates to create waves of coloured lights across the wall which, when combined with the interspersed, undulating perforated steel panels really does make for a unique flowing green space."
So what does Matt attribute the company's continuing success to in the awards which in 2019 had record entries, record first-time entries and record international entries and makes receiving one even more of an achievement? "Where we can we try and partner with our clients and this site is a case in point," he says. "We have built up a wonderful working relationship with the building management team who take a genuine interest in making this location a vibrant local landmark."
It's for all these reasons and the fact that Nurture Landscapes achieves great and beautiful results, that makes it a worthy winner of the award, says Reesink's Alastair Rowell, who presented the award to the company in front of an audience of over 1000 BALI members and guests at the 43rd annual awards: "It's a fantastic feat of grounds maintenance skill that Nurture Landscapes not only win this award, but win it for the fourth time. It's grounds maintenance that creates a work of art and provides pleasure to so many commuters as well as being progressive and cutting-edge in its execution too."
Paul Bean, sales director at Nurture Landscapes, says: "To be recognised again is testament to the enthusiasm, passion and skill of our teams. We invest in training our people well and creating strong business-to-business relationships. This award reinforces we're doing the right thing and we're generating the kind of success we'd always hoped for."