CHILDREN from schools and nurseries in Peeblesshire got a real ‘tweet’ when they returned last week.
Pupils weren’t the only ones flocking to the classroom last Monday. As youngsters nestled in to school life for the first time since the Christmas holidays, some feathered friends did too.
A little birdie contacted the Peeblesshire News to let the paper know about the generosity of Peebles handyman Lee Darker who made and donated 17 bird tables for schools and nurseries throughout the county.
The idea came to Lee when his friend, Chelsea Thomson, who works at St Ronan’s Nursery, contacted him enquiring about the cost of his hand-crafted bird boxes and tables.
Lee told the Peeblesshire: “She thought it would be nice for the children returning to school.
“I messaged a price, but then after giving it some thought, I decided to make them for all the schools and nurseries free of charge.
“I also made one for a school in Galashiels, and two nursing homes.”
As it happens, many of the schools are taking part in the RSPB Big Schools’ Birdwatch.
The children survey the birds they see in their school grounds and send the results to the charity.
Therefore, Lee’s gifts came at the right time.
“All of the tables have been collected. The response from the teachers and nursery staff has been overwhelming, they’re so pleased,” he said.
The big-hearted handyman, who funded the project out of his own pocket, says he owes a great deal of thanks to local businessman Ewan Irvine for keeping him dry.
“Ewan let me work in one of his containers in Cavalry Park, so I wasn’t stuck outside in the bad weather,” said Lee.
“My neighbour Graham Noble and my teenage daughter Maisie also helped.”
He added: “I have had a few people asking about donations so I’ve just suggested that they donate bird feed to the schools and nurseries.”
If you’re feeling the effects of the lockdown lull, ‘leave it to Lee’ to make you a little chipper!
As well as a range of bird boxes and tables, Lee also makes homes for other small animals, as well as garden planters.