Centre's open day to feature opening of garden in GP's memory

Dr Richard Kell. PHOTO: Dr Annette Abbott

Dr Richard Kell. PHOTO: Dr Annette Abbott - Credit: Archant

A memorial garden in honour of a town's popular and much-loved GP will officially open this weekend as part of a charity open day.

People from east Suffolk and beyond are invited to find out more about the free services offered by the Pear Tree Centre, in Bungay Road, Halesworth, at a special open day on Sunday, May 15.

As part of the celebrations, charity founder and former trustee Barbara Kell will officially open Richard's Garden in memory of her late husband.

Barbara Kell and sculptor Brian Alabaster with 'Charlotte' in Richard's Garden at the Pear Tree Cent

Barbara Kell and sculptor Brian Alabaster with 'Charlotte' in Richard's Garden at the Pear Tree Centre. PHOTO: The Pear Tree Fund - Credit: Archant

Richard Kell was a well-known local GP and chair of the Halesworth Community Nursing Care Fund, the Pear Tree Fund's predecessor, for 18 years before retiring from his role in 2017.

He died in July 2019 of motor neurone disease aged 64.

The garden has been created in his memory as a tranquil space in which visitors can relax and includes a striking piece of artwork by his friend, Suffolk sculptor Brian Alabaster.

Barbara said: “It is so sad that Richard had not been able to see the completion of The Pear Tree Centre, but my family and I are honoured that the garden has been named in his memory.

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“Richard was passionate about the outdoors, walking and wildlife, and loved nothing better than pottering around in our garden.

"He would have loved the calm, tranquil ambience of the space created by Edward Flaxman and his team at Studio 31.”

The open day runs from 11am-3pm, with the garden opening at 1pm.

Lowestoft Chorale will also perform between 1pm-3pm.

Kevin Vaughan, chief executive of the Pear Tree Fund.

Kevin Vaughan, chief executive of the Pear Tree Fund. - Credit: Pear Tree Fund

Kevin Vaughan, chief executive of the Pear Tree Fund, said: “We are really excited about this open day and being given the opportunity to throw open our doors to our local community.

"We’d encourage as many people to come along as possible and find out more about the wide range of free services we provide to people with life-changing illnesses and long-term health conditions, together with their families and carers and those who have experienced a bereavement.

"This includes everything from a cup of tea and listening ear to help with wellbeing, group support, information and advice and sessions with our qualified counsellors and complementary therapists."