AN old Quaker burial ground has had some of its former glory restored thanks to the care and attention of keen gardeners.

The ancient cemetery behind the Friends Meeting House, on Norton Green, Stockton, now has a wildflower and herb sanctuary, where once-common varieties can blossom all summer.

The project was the idea of Quaker attender David Williams and Enid Harding, who has since moved to Berwick-upon-Tweed.

The idea was to create a haven of peace and tranquillity where wildflowers and herbs could be encouraged to grow simply by marking off and reserving a grassy area that would usually be mowed.

Mr Williams allowed wild flowers to flourish, and then transplanted them to a shady border area around the north and east walls of the burial ground.

The border is designed to carry a variety of flowers and fragrant herbs, with cowslips just past their peak and two varieties of bluebells in flower.

Buttercups, which are not nearly as common now, will flourish and visitors should be able to spot feverfew, wild geraniums, species of ferns, thyme and borage.

Amateur gardener Mr Williams said: "I've been able to count over 50 varieties.

"Some seeds and plants came from my own garden, but most of them were here in the burial ground all the time, it was just a question of rescuing them from the lawnmower."

The grounds are no longer used for burials, though cremated remains are still sometimes scattered there.