Royal Appointment as Clober Farm is officially opened

Clober Farm

Today (Monday 8th October), HRH The Princess Royal, Honorary President of Spinal Injuries Scotland (SIS), has officially opened the charity’s fantastic new Clober Farm house and garden.

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HRH Princess Royal with John Clark, Acting Chair of Spinal Injuries Scotland

HRH Princess Royal with John Clark, Acting Chair of Spinal Injuries Scotland

Clober Farm, a grade C listed farmhouse and extensive garden, was bequeathed to SIS in 2007. Since then, the charity has worked tirelessly to convert it into state-of-the-art accommodation and garden specifically designed for use by people with spinal cord injuries.

Ahead of the official opening, SIS Director Cathy Crilly recounted her experiences of the last stage of the development where the BBC Beechgrove Garden team helped staff and volunteers from SIS, Digby Brown and others complete the transformation of the garden.

“I have a high injury and do not have full function in my hands although I can use my arms. My hopes for Clober Farm were that the designer would take into consideration the users of the garden and their limitations. I waited anxiously until I could visit because the area was inaccessible to wheelchair users and eventually, after the hard landscaping was complete, I joined in the two day filming with the presenters and staff of the Beechgrove Garden.

I thoroughly enjoyed my two days and have learned a great deal - the raised beds in particular are an asset in a garden for a wheelchair user. I now know that I can strap small garden implements to my hand and dig to plant and make holes for bulbs. Don't get me wrong when I say I would have loved to have been in there with the volunteers giving it welly!! But, in my own small way, and with some assistance, I was part of the garden development process. It only remains for me now to take the ideas I have learned with the Beechgrove Garden team and use them in my own garden.

I am quite sure my husband will be busy building a raised bed next summer!!”

Cathy Crilly has been a Director of Spinal Injuries Scotland since August 2011.