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Meet the team: Martin

Meet Martin, one of the skilled gardeners looking after our open spaces.

Martin, one of the skilled gardeners working for Weymouth Town Council

“I became interested in gardening after leaving school and taking on some casual jobs for an old schoolteacher. I hadn’t completed training at the time, so applied at Kingston Maurward, who directed me to the council.

“After working a temporary summer contract aged 16, I decided it was for me. That’s when I started an Amenity Horticulture apprenticeship as part of the Youth Training Scheme (YTS), earning a City and Guilds qualification.”

Martin works as a craft gardener and is part of our Parks and Open Spaces Team. He generally looks after Sandsfoot and Wyke Gardens, although does pick up other bits and pieces as needed. Having worked under different councils in the area since 1983, Martin’s knowledge and experience play a key role in keeping Weymouth’s Sandsfoot garden to an award-winning standard.

Martin said of his role:

“This year has been especially rewarding, I’ve really seen the benefits our gardens have on the lives of local people. It’s great to see my work is appreciated and makes a difference. I’ve even had chocolates and a thank you card from a resident. Sandsfoot has been an ideal spot for people to meet and socialise safely during the pandemic. The café is open for takeaways and visitors can get a coffee to enjoy in a sheltered spot.”

Sandsfoot is understandably Martin’s favourite spot in Weymouth. Martin enjoys Weymouth’s fireworks events, although does have regrets about missing the Tall Ships event, which he was away on holiday for back in 1994!

Martin’s garden tips

Martin’s top tip for getting your garden looking tidy?

“If you’ve a garden keep the entrance tidy, get the hedges straight and edge the grass – it can work miracles for first impressions!”

For your hanging baskets Martin recommends geraniums such as Summer showers, Pecope, Bacopa, Catmint, fuchsias, Petunias and Bidens are a good choice too as they attract pollinators. You can also get a gel which helps the soil to retain water.

If you buy bedding plants from a nursery – don’t buy too early! Separating your bedding plants can also help to reduce the maintenance needed for your flower beds. Mulch will help to supress weeds.

For herbaceous plants, Martin has this advice from a recent project: “At Radipole Park Drive we planted herbaceous plants and added a ground cover to stop weeds, then put gravel over the top. This seems to have worked well, you just need to top up with gravel as needed!”

Get in touch

If you’d like to send feedback, or report an issue in any of our parks or open spaces, you can call us on 01305 239831 or email parks@weymouthtowncouncil.gov.uk