The private courtyard of St Mary with St George German Lutheran Church and the International Lutheran Student Centre (ILSC), is a sunken haven in the busy streets of Bloomsbury.
It was created on a site damaged during WW2, to provide a safe, calm place for student residents and members of the Church congregation and community to work and relax.
The first glimpse of the small paved garden is through a lunette in the reception area. There is a variegated Weigela
and Japanese rowan tree in the centre, with ground-level beds around the courtyard containing a variety of perennial shrubs as well as seasonal and annual plants. The area is overlooked by a garden balcony (no access).
The garden is planted, maintained and watered by ILSC staff, although it is also offered to student residents and members of the congregation of St Mary's to plant or help with maintenance if they feel inspired!
In St Mary's Church, which opens onto the garden, there is a sculpture of Christ on the Cross
by Elisabeth Frink, who also created the wonderful Walking Madonna
at Salisbury Cathedral.
On another side of the garden is a social clubroom, used regularly by student residents and by St Mary's for social and community events such as their annual Christmas fair, and monthly ministry with children and youth.