92-year-old Peter finally decides time has come to hang up trowel

Peter Common community gardener Linlithgow
Peter Common community gardener Linlithgow

A community gardener has finally decided it’s time to put away the pruning shears and enjoy the rewards that retirement brings

Peter Common – a very youthful 92 years old – has, for the last eight years, tended the gardens around the flats at Water Yett and the West Port area of Linlithgow.

But now he is reluctantly cutting back work on his floral displays.

He said: “I’ve had a life-long interest in gardening but now I’m not able to do so much, so I’m scaling back to just the hanging baskets and containers at the entrance to the flats where my wife Cathy and I live.”

Fellow community gardeners Eileen Murray, Audrey Simpson and Dianne Lamont have joined in thanking Peter for all his hard work.

Eileen said: “It has always been great to have Peter involved in brightening up this corner of town and we all enjoy working with him.”

Peter has been increasingly helped by the trio, whose combined efforts were once described by Beautiful Scotland judges as “the best community gardening you’re likely to see anywhere”.

Dianne said: “Over the past year, Peter has also been assisted by pupils from Donaldson’s School.

“When approached to have students help with his garden, Peter was instantly accepting of the idea, not only seeing the benefit to himself but knowing how much the young people would benefit during the Tuesday sessions.

“Peter didn’t sit back but offered advice, shared his tools and gently encouraged, even bringing soft drinks to ease the work.”

Audrey added: “I’ve always appreciated Peter’s expert advice – it was almost like having my own personal consultant gardener!”

Ron Smith, chairman of Burgh Beautiful Linlithgow, was also full of praise.

He said: “His contribution to Linlithgow’s exceptional community gardening has been exemplary and we would like to thank him for all his hard work over the years.”

And Provost Tom Kerr said: “What an amazing achievement! Peter is an example to us all that, regardless of your age, you can still contribute to, and be a positive role model for, society in general.

“I offer him the thanks of the community at large for the amount of work he has put in over the years in showing the burgh off to its floral best.”