On Friday 26th September BBC television presenter Sophie Raworth officially opened the First Touch garden at St George’s.

A larger version of the First Touch garden, inspired by the strength and determination shown by premature babies and their families, was showcased earlier this year at the 2014 Chelsea Flower Show where it was awarded the silver-gilt medal.

The legacy garden opening was very well attended by over 100 guests including Mayor of Wandsworth Stuart Thom, Tooting MP Sadiq Khan and representatives from the Royal Horticultural Society, Tooting baby and Bliss charity. All of the attendees enjoyed some delicious cakes supplied by Mitie and a performance from the St Matthew’s School Choir which includes some children who were cared for at the St George’s Hospital neonatal unit.

Miles Scott, chief executive of St George’s Healthcare NHS Trust said: “I am delighted to welcome the legacy First Touch Chelsea Flower Show garden to St George’s. It is a truly beautiful way to raise awareness of the difficulties faced by premature babies and their families.

“First Touch is an immensely important charity to St George’s. They work tirelessly to raise considerable funds and provide emotional support for both our patients and neonatal staff, and we are proud as a trust to be working side-by-side with them.

“I would especially like to thank Patrick Collins and all of those who have volunteered their time and expertise to design and create this eye-catching garden. It is a stunning space, which I know will be enjoyed by our staff, patients and visitors.”

Patrick Collins, landscape designer said: “I am delighted to be involved with such a worthy cause and hope the First Touch garden will be enjoyed by families with babies on the neonatal unit, trust staff and all visitors to St George’s, whilst raising awareness of the wonderful work of the neonatal unit and its charity First Touch.”

The First Touch garden is situated just outside the M&S Café at St George’s Hospital, Blackshaw Road, London, SW17 0QT.

It features a plaque giving thanks to First Touch, Patrick Collins, Landscape Associates, CED Natural Stone, Adrian Gray Stone Balancing, Elveden Instant Hedges, Barcham Trees and all of the priceless volunteers who worked tirelessly to create the garden.

The First Touch charity is dedicated to raising funds to support sick and premature babies in the neonatal unit at St George’s Hospital. If you would like to know more about their work, please visit their website.

To see some more photos of the First Touch garden at St George’s Hospital, please visit our Facebook page.