Mark Hacker and Maureen Keating open hand-made garden in Barkingside for charity

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East London and West Essex Guardian Series: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter, covering Wanstead and Woodford. Call me on 07824 530 127

A couple opened their garden yesterday to raise money for a hospice.

Around 80 people took a £2.50 tour of Mark Hacker and Maureen Keating's garden in Ashurst Drive, Barkingside, to raise money for St Francis Hospice in Romford.

Mr Hacker, 69, and partner Ms Keating, 67, raised £500 for the hospice with the public enjoying tea and cakes in the garden, which includes a model village, a railway, a stream and a waterfall.

Mr Hacker said: "Some people were just dumbfounded when they saw it and they could not believe their eyes, they were really impressed.

"I used to work for an engineering firm so I have always enjoyed making things, so the past 10 years me and Maureen have been adding more and more to our garden.

"I am not one for sitting around and watching the TV, I would rather do something productive and Maureen is the same.

"We have made everything in the garden ourselves and it was a pleasure to be able to share it with the public while raising money for a good cause."


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