Carpentry Students Create Bug Hotel for RHS Cancer-Awareness Garden

For the second consecutive year, students at Leeds College of Building are using their skills to help create a poignant RHS show garden.
By: Leeds College of Building
LEEDS, U.K. - May 24, 2024 - PRLog -- The Level 1 Diploma Carpentry & Joinery students have crafted two five-foot triangular wooden bug hotels. The structures will feature at the main entrance of a garden going on display at RHS Tatton Flower Show 2024 (17 – 21 July).

Led by garden designer Carolyn Hardern and landscape construction manager Jon Jarvis, the project will raise awareness about melanoma skin cancer in the construction industry. The '1804 Garden' is named after the date melanoma was first referred to in the medical world.

Research shows that working outdoors in the sun leads to around five melanoma cases and one death a week in the UK. Last year, construction workers accounted for 44% of occupational skin cancer diagnoses and 42% of occupational skin cancer deaths each year – despite construction workers making up only 8% of the workforce.

Carolyn said, "Skin cancer is a critical but often overlooked safety challenge in the construction industry when so many professionals work outdoors. We're really looking forward to showcasing this thought-provoking garden and hope to raise more awareness about this vital issue."

At just over 300m2, the garden will be the largest at the Tatton Flower Show this year and promote the charities Band of Builders and Melanoma UK. The garden is shaped like an equilateral triangle, inspired by the yellow and black radiation symbol often found in hospital cancer centres.

The Leeds College of Building students recycled waste timber from previous projects to make the bug hotels. Wood was glued and planed to required sizes and drilled, screwed, glued, and dowel jointed together. They finished off the hotels by adding a wooden beetle shape and each will be filled with natural materials collected by pupils at Wrenbury County and Bickerton primary schools in Cheshire.

Rob Smith, Head of Partnerships & Skills at Leeds College of Building, said, "Skin cancer disproportionately affects our industry given the nature of our work outdoors. Shockingly, construction workers diagnosed with melanoma have the highest number of deaths than any other profession. We hope that our students' contribution to the project will help to raise more awareness about sun safety and skin cancer prevention."

The 1804 Garden will go on to feature on a smaller scale at the Southport Flower Show in August before being donated to a worthy, permanent local home. The project will cost in the region of £30k and donations towards the build and garden relocation are now being asked via the project's Just Giving ( page.

To find out more, visit the 1804 Garden Instagram page ( or see the Leeds College of Building website ( for carpentry and joinery course information.

Source:Leeds College of Building
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