New garden for St Michael's Hospital staff A new garden for staff at St Michael's Hospital has been provided thanks to Above & Beyond support. The grant provided by Above & Beyond paid for raised beds, water butts, a bench and table, and all the additional materials needed to make the courtyard greener. Work on the garden was completed thanks to an army of volunteers from the University of Bristol horticultural team. Alex Heelis, sustainability officer at UH Bristol, said: "Research has shown that access to green space reduces cortisol (stress) levels, increases physical activity and speeds recovery if you have been ill. "Provision of a green space will provide these direct benefits to staff which in turn will benefit patients. Improved health and well-being of staff results in less staff absence and higher retention rates which both improve the quality of care provision for patients." The garden revamp took place on 4 June when volunteers worked from 9am until 2pm - despite adverse weather conditions. Simone Jacobs, horticultural supervisor at the University of Bristol, said: "It was wonderful working at the hospital and creating a garden that will be enjoyed by so many. The staff response to the finished courtyard in the short time we were there was overwhelming. "On behalf of the Gardens and Grounds team from the University of Bristol we are very thankful to Above & Beyond for funding the project and making this collaboration with St Michael's Hospital possible. Our 15 volunteers had a rewarding memorable day and the NHS are such worthy recipients." If you are a member of UH Bristol staff who would like to use our grants programme, make an application now. Watch the video below to see the garden's progress from start to finish!