St.Mary the Virgin, Lewisham Lewisham High Street  SE13 6LE

St.Mary the Virgin Lewisham

346 Lewisham High Street

SE13 6LE   020 8690 2682

Therapeutic Garden Project

St Mary’s has for many years had a vision for reaching out and supporting people recovering from poor mental health. Our church is positioned on busy, noisy Lewisham High Street, with its high levels of pollution and the intrusive noise of sirens and traffic, a constant reminder of hectic modern day living. Lewisham has some of the worst health inequality indicators in the country, especially for black and minority ethnic groups, and areas where social deprivation is among the worst in the country.

Next door to the church is the Ladywell Mental Health Unit, part of the South London and Maudsley (SLAM) NHS Foundation Trust.

If you would like more information or like to become involved contact


Saturday April 1st the second community build day when the beds were earthed, planted and seeded

St Mary’s Therapeutic Garden is a place of beauty, an oasis in the heart of Lewisham. It was created through a joint collaboration between the Ladywell Unit (SLaM) and St Mary’s Church in 2017, to promote mental well-being through gardening. Professional Gardeners from Sydenham Community Gardens, designed and project managed over fifty volunteers, who generously gave their time to transform an underused part of the churchyard.

It has perennial beds, wildflower meadows, an orchard, a woodland area and raised beds for vegetables and salads. These are looked after by volunteers, including some from the Ladywell Unit, Mind and Elysium Healthcare. Regular gardening sessions take place every Tuesday afternoon, 1-3pm, when everyone is welcome to join in. Benches and pergolas have been donated in memory of loved ones, and it is open for visitors to enjoy everyday.

The following poem by St Anselm (d. 1109) sums up the Christian ethos of the Garden,

Come now,

Put aside your busy-ness for a while,

Take refuge for a time

From your troublesome thoughts:

Throw away your cares,

And let your burdensome worries wait.

Take some time off for God:

Rest for a while….

Registered Charity

Number 1182343