John adds to medals with his ‘birth-to-death’ dis­play

Macclesfield Express - - BOLLINGTON BEER FESTIVAL -

A VET­ERAN ex­hibitor at the flower show has won another medal for his gar­den de­sign.

Mac­cles­field de­signer Jon Til­ley won a sil­ver-gilt award for his cre­ation en­ti­tled ‘Life is a Gar­den Path’.

The gar­den is a white con­crete path im­printed with baby-sized foot­prints that grad­u­ally get big­ger as the path pro­gresses.

Seven dif­fer­ent smaller gar­dens lie within the main one, each rep­re­sent­ing a dif­fer­ent pe­riod of some­one’s life – birth, child­hood, teenage years, mar­riage and chil­dren, money and fi­nance, re­tire­ment, and death.

Its fea­tures in­clude a baby’s pram and a bub­bling pool of hor­mones. The gar­den ends with a hid­den walk­way, sug­gest­ing that no-one knows where our jour­ney leads af­ter we die.

Jon, who lives on Pin­fold Street in the town cen­tre, said: “It is one of the gar­dens I am most

‘It is one of the gar­dens I am most proud of’

proud of in my six years at the show, as well as the first one I did which was called Punk’s Not Dead and was about my re­la­tion­ship with my dad.

“It’s been ex­tremely dif­fi­cult build­ing it, as we have tried a lot of new things and we were build­ing the gar­den right up to ten min­utes be­fore the judges came around, which might have been why we didn’t get the gold un­for­tu­nately.

“But it’s not about medals or awards.

“I’m not re­ally de­sign­ing gar­dens as much any more but I just love the show and cre­at­ing things, it’s all about the creative process and then see­ing peo­ple’s re­ac­tions to my de­signs.

“It’s quite a mov­ing gar­den so we have had peo­ple get­ting a bit teary af­ter they see it, and I’ve seen some of the older vis­i­tors be­ing con­soled by their chil­dren.”

Jon, who works with his wife Carolyn, worked on the gar­den with Peaks and Plains Hous­ing Trust, and it has been made in sup­port of East Cheshire Hospice.

The 50-year-old, who has now moved into de­vel­op­ing and de­sign­ing prop­er­ties rather than gar­dens, added: “It’s funny be­cause they con­tacted me af­ter the gar­den was de­signed but it fits quite well, as it’s about life and death.

“It sits along­side what Peaks and Plains do as well – they look af­ter peo­ple through­out ev­ery stage of their lives and that’s what the gar­den is all about.

“We have been nom­i­nated for ar­chi­tec­tural awards for our home in Mac­cles­field and we pos­si­bly might be de­vel­op­ing the old Massie Dye­works build­ing which is on Loney Street.

“It is an ex­cit­ing time.”

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