A WOODLAND memorial to tragic schoolboy, Tyrese Glasgow, has been created by his young family and friends at Saddleworth’s most popular beauty spot.
Former Saddleworth School pupil Tyrese from Manchester Road, Mossley died in June aged just 12 years old and an inquest into his death has been set for December 1, 2016.
Other pupils and staff lined Uppermill High Street in a moving tribute as his funeral cortege passed through the village on July 8.
Now to create a permanent memorial, Tyrese’s sister Tiah and close family friend Kara Leigh Bryan joined six of his closest friends to build a pond at Dovestone Reservoir.
It will also form part of a regeneration programme close to Ashway Gap to include felling of long-standing conifers, re-planting of a broad leaf woodland and the provision of habitat trail for wheelchair users.
Under the supervision of RSPB warden Kate Hanley, Saddleworth Environmental Education and Dovestone Youth Ranger co-ordinator Greg Cookson, plus Mahdlo staff members Amanda Hamer and Helen Boxall, Tyrese’s pals got stuck in to create the peaceful space with views of the water and surrounding hills.
Kara explained: “We went out with Greg to have a look at other ponds and saw they had frogs and wildlife in which we liked.
“Ty liked to build things so that is what we wanted to do for him. He loved nature and animals too. He would have really loved it and it’s nice for other people to see as well.”
Tia said: “Kate had already done the base and part filled it with water so we had to fill in the gaps with mud and twigs and let in the rest of the water.”
Kara added: “We’re also having a carving from wood of an animal at the top of the pond, so we know it is ours and Ty knows it is his. We all got stuck in and would do it all again for Ty.”
Family and friends will return to the spot together to unveil the new pond and share a picnic there as they remember Ty.
Amanda and Helen from Mahdlo Youth Zone are carrying out other activities with the youngsters and invited Greg to help with this local project.
He said: “It is an absolute honour to do something like this. It is so humbling to be involved and nice to see them smiling again as there were a lot of sad faces to start with.”
RSPB Warden Kate added: “It is such a grown up, positive way of turning a horrible situation into something good.
“They wanted a memorial for their friend who they have lost and they have chosen to do it here and help wildlife at the same time which is brilliant.
“They have helped make this pond which will attract lots of interesting wildlife: toads, newts, frogs and lots of rare dragon flies we are seeing on our ponds in other sites.”
Kate also explained more about regeneration of an area once dominated by Ashway Gap House and its famous rhododendron bushes.
“We are felling 75 per cent of the conifers and re-planting with native broad leave trees which in five to 10 years will start to look like a new woodland,” she said.
“We are also creating a path through the trees for adventurous wheelchair users. What they want is access to all the same habitats everyone else has but they don’t want lots of sanitised paths and for it to be too boring or too easy.
“This time next year we will have pushed the path all the way through to the end and done all the felling and the re-planting so we can open it up to the public.”