Horsham guerilla gardeners: 'It's about having pride in where you live'
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However, it wasn’t her own back yard that Justine Osborne chose to spruce up but an overgrown roadside flower bed. And she roped in her 82-year-old mum to help.
The guerilla gardeners set about uprooting weeds from a piece of land at the junction of Harwood Road and Crawley Road and now plan to plant some spring bulbs there.
"I walk past it every day with my dog,” said Justine, who lives nearby. “It just looked awful and I think if you take a little bit of time and you care a little bit, you can just make things look nicer for other people, as well as yourself.
"It’s about having a bit of pride in where you live.”
And now others have expressed pride in Justine and her mum Orial Wing, 82. They have taken to social media to praise the pair for their community-minded actions. Among them was Horsham councillor Colin Minto who told the diligent duo: “Amazing work, thank you for you passion.”
Former councillor Christine Costin added: “Congratulations to both of you. Your efforts will vastly improve the the look of this area. Keep up the great work.”
Another resident said: “Well done, ladies … great job.” And another said simply: “Thank you for doing this.”
Justine explained that she had time on her hands after giving in her notice as a pensions trust consultant to take on another job, and was placed on gardening leave.
She said that she had noticed that the overgrown roadside circular flower bed “made the area look unkempt and uncared for and people round here aren’t like that."
She had roped in her mum – who lives in Leatherhead – to help with the spruce-up “because she loves gardening. And it’s a big job for one person to do.”
But it’s not the first time that Justine has done her bit for the community. “Where I used to live, people did a lot for the upkeep of the area and we did community litter picks every Saturday.
"Their motto was ‘Love Where You Live’ – and it’s just come with me.”