The pop-up memory garden offers a safe haven from a taboo subject

ISLANDERS can remember a loved one while supporting a charity this week by visiting a temporary memory garden in town.

Maillards Funeral Directors is hosting its third ‘Celebrating Life Memory Garden’ pop-up at 31 Queen Street – the site of the former Dorothy Perkins store – until Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The community initiative, now in its second year, allows visitors to remember a loved one by writing a memory on a card – which can then be placed on a wall – in exchange for a donation to a Charity association.

The cards used have been imbued with seeds of “forget me not”, which will be planted once the event is over.

Previously, the Memory Garden helped support the island’s Special Baby Care Unit, but this week’s initiative will raise funds for Dementia Jersey.

Mark Reynolds, Managing Director of Elme Group – which owns Maillard Funeral Directors – said: “The opening of our third garden is testament to the success of the last two; the response we received from people in Jersey was overwhelmingly positive, so we felt compelled to continue our pop-up in 2022.

“Death remains a difficult and somewhat taboo subject, so our goal is to create a safe and inviting space for anyone who wishes to remember a loved one to do so in a relaxing environment.”

Claudine Snape, Managing Director of Dementia Jersey, said: “We are delighted to be the chosen charity for this year’s Maillard Memory Garden. Not only does this give Islanders the opportunity to remember their loved ones and share a memory, but all money raised will go towards our new allotment – a space that will be specially designed with sensory elements where people with dementia who love to garden will be able to visit in the spring and summer and continue doing what they have always loved to do.

Maillards general manager Julian de la Cour said the memorial gardens seemed to grow in popularity each time.

Connor Burgher, Town Center and Events Manager, said: ‘I would love to see more pop-up shops like this – I hate to see empty units around St Helier and think it’s great that these guys moved in for about a week. ‘

Jessica C. Bell