Landscaping team answer SOS appeal 
for Children in Need

DIY SOS presenters Nick Knowles and Julian Perryman, centre, with from left, Bill Meeklah, Matt Jeffery and David Lewendon of Elms Landscaping Services, in Oakham
DIY SOS presenters Nick Knowles and Julian Perryman, centre, with from left, Bill Meeklah, Matt Jeffery and David Lewendon of Elms Landscaping Services, in Oakham
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Two teams from the region have volunteered their time and energy to prepare a new disabled children’s centre for BBC Children in Need.

David Lewendon of Elms Landscaping Services, in Oakham and staff members Bill Meeklah, 25, and Matthew Jeffrey, 31, cleared the ground and laid turfs and tarmac on the DIY SOS Big Build project.

And carpenters Michael Langston, 44 and Karl Dowling, 43, also from Oakham, worked on the roof, hung doors and put up stud walls.

Over four days in September both groups worked with hundreds of volunteers from around the country to transform the home of in Westwood, Peterborough, for the charity Little Miracles – a parent-led support group for families who have children with additional needs, disabilities and life limiting conditions.

The team from the gardening services company, in Alsthorpe Road, said far from being exhausted after four solid days of working 12-hour shifts, they had never felt more “exhilarated”.

David said: “It was absolutely fantastic. It’s an amazing feeling to be able to help people who are less fortunate than yourself.”

David, who applied to help after reading a facebook message, said the atmosphere while they worked landscape the two-and-a-half acre gardens, was “unbelievable”.

He added: “We helped with the landscaping by putting in resin bonded gravel, tarmac, rubber floors and levelling the ground. I don’t think I heard a cross word said by one single trader among the hundreds who were there. It was a lot of effort and a lot of fun and we all got a lot out of it.”

The Oakham team got involved in the last four days of the nine-day project, after building work was done, to help prepare the grounds.

The two carpenters worked for three days on the main house.

Michael said: “It was an emotional experience knowing that it was for children with cancer and other illness and problems.”

When Little Miracles outgrew two of its premises, the DIY SOS team stepped in. With some 600 volunteers and local companies they created a new centre with landscaped gardens.

The programme is on BBC One at 8pm on 
Wednesday.