School’s tribute to much-loved gardening project pioneer

Margaret Blythe is joined by family members Victoria Buglass, Jonathan Blythe and Margaret Newman, as their open the new learning centre at Holder House Allotments named in memory of her husband John Blythe, with project manager Chris Convery.
Margaret Blythe is joined by family members Victoria Buglass, Jonathan Blythe and Margaret Newman, as their open the new learning centre at Holder House Allotments named in memory of her husband John Blythe, with project manager Chris Convery.

A much-loved joiner who helped set up a pioneering gardening project is being remembered with a classroom bearing his name.

The John Blythe teaching room is the latest addition to the allotment plot run by the Holder House project.

If it wasn’t for John’s drive or vision Holder House Project would not be the success it is now

Chris Convery

The not-for-profit community interest company provides a place for people with learning and physical disabilities to go to, where they can take part in horticulture and woodwork activities, learn new skills and gain qualifications.

The room was funded through money created by people’s direct payments which were re-invested back into the project.

Project manager Chris Convery said: “The Holder project is not for profit, so if there is any profit made it is re-invested back into the project.

“On this occasion we chose to use the money to have a classroom on site.

“We thought it would also be a fitting tribute to John Blythe, who was instrumental in creating the Holder House Project to name the classroom in his memory.”

The classroom will be used by people who access the site and will provide a place where training courses can be carried out.

Mr Convery added: “We are working with a number of new groups and have plans to extend the garden and create a more welcoming picnic area.”

John Blythe BEd (Hons) BA MBA from Langford Drive, Boldon, died following a stroke, aged 59, last year.

Mr Convery said: “If it wasn’t for John’s drive or vision, Holder House Project would not be the success it is now, so it was only natural for us to want to do something in his memory.”