You know, I do love my job, but sometimes you just want to have some time out of the office and on site. Today, I was treated to that, as I made my way from Oakleigh Manor’s site in Kent to the Thames Barrier Complex in South East London! I was visiting to see how the teams from Oakleigh Manor Horticultural Services have been getting on; we are contracted to perform ground and garden maintenance on the Complex and associated sites, in conjunction with the Environment Agency. We are so happy we secured such a prolific and sought-after contract. We aren’t holding anything back when we say the previous companies contracted to do the job we are currently carrying out did not do very well at all. In fact, that is putting it supremely kindly! For example, our Project Manager Aaron Jordan described to me that 10-15 bin bags of litter were picked on the first day! Of course, this is a job we had to carry out before we even started what we wanted to. With such a long road ahead, this really set the tone of our commitment. Not only this, you can see the difference in care below in something so small; the edging between pathway paving and turf! It is such a subtle change, but it makes a huge difference.
This is a ‘Before’ photo, if you will. Edging between patio paving and lawn may seem like a small thing, but it is a good place to start as it not only outlines how much there is to do at the Complex, but also how much we care about the smallest discrepancies. As we see it, as a monument of London, something attracts tourists from around the world, the Thames Barrier Complex should look pristine and should install public confidence.
…and here is the so-called ‘After’ shot. As you can see, it really does makes all the difference. It looks much tidier. You may be wondering about the discolouration of some of the grass. That is because under someone else’s leadership, a lot of chemical spraying occurred as the main mode of cleaning. It is true it plays a part, but it shouldn’t be used without the tidying up of plant material, edging, etc.
As I pointed out, this is only a minute part of this contract. Over the next two years, we will be cultivating an educational garden, complete with a beehive, wild flowers and areas where children can learn more about wildlife. We are continuously carrying out garden and grounds maintenance, which involves a lot of lawn trimming, cutting back the canopy of trees to allow more light through, general maintenance…The list is endless! However, some of the employees at the Environment Agency have already made their appreciation of our work known, despite the fact we only started the contract last Monday, according to Aaron Jordan. It is the appreciation that the Complex will get from other people which makes Aaron committed to the project and it excites him.
Finally, all you have to do is look at the image below for our efforts on the Complex. How nice is it to come and enjoy your lunch, overlooking the river and the skyline of London, from this area of pristine beauty:
The progress of our work can only really be appreciated over time. This is why I will keep you updated to our progress up at the Barrier. Keep your eyes peeled, or better still, pay the site a visit yourself!
This article was written by Lewis