Memorial Tree planted for Karen Henderson at Restoration Yard

Friday February 25th 2022


From left to right, Karen's son Tristan, husband Alistair and parents Cathy and Jim at the tree planting.

Written by Midlothian View Reporter, Luke Jackson

On Friday 11th February 2022, exactly one year on from the day she sadly passed away, a group of Karen Henderson’s family and close friends gathered in the courtyard of Restoration Yard to see her husband and son plant a tree in her memory.

Karen Henderson was a much-loved, familiar face at Restoration Yard. From the day it opened until her untimely death, Karen was a very regular visitor to The Store and The Kitchen at Restoration Yard. She was always keen to get involved by attending Restoration Yard events including being one of the first customers to sign up to modelling in Restoration Yard’s debut fashion show in September 2018. She used that platform to fundraise for, and promote the important work being done by, what was then a very new secondary breast cancer charity, Make 2nds Count.

When Karen Henderson passed away part of her funeral arrangements included a final journey to Restoration Yard when her funeral car took a short trip through Dalkeith Country Park.

Karen’s family approached Restoration Yard early in 2022 with the wish to create a lasting memorial to her within the beautiful Tuscan-inspired courtyard that she loved to visit. It was agreed that a blossom tree would be an apt marker to remember her by. A Cercis Siliquastrum tree was selected for its beautiful spring flowers. The tree was donated by R&B Nursery in Midlothian and a plaque made by Royal Botanic Gardens Edinburgh due to connections to Karen’s family.

The planting of Karen’s Tree coincided with the introduction of a new charity partnership for Restoration Yard. The team has selected The Karen Henderson Legacy for Make 2nds Count as its chosen charity for 2022/23.

Karen’s husband Alistair Henderson said of Karen’s Tree: “Karen was such a beautiful and inspiring person. She was very sadly taken from us far too early last year due to breast cancer. Karen loved to visit Restoration Yard to meet up with friends, to walk and, of course, to shop, with fashion being a big part of Karen’s life. It is great therefore that Restoration Yard has chosen the Karen Henderson Legacy Fund as its charity partner this year and that our family has been allowed to plant a tree in Karen’s memory, giving her a permanent presence in the courtyard. This is something Karen would have been delighted about, as we often joked that it was her second home.

“We chose a Cercis Siliquastrum for its spring blossom of purple-pink flowers with heart shaped leaves. Hopefully it flourishes and is as strong, colourful and beautiful as Karen herself. The medicinal benefits from the leaves and flowers of the Cercis Siliquastrum are already well known in certain middle eastern countries and recent research has identified properties that also help fight breast cancer cells. It is therefore a very appropriate choice.”

Sisi Gibreel, head of retail operations at Restoration Yard, says: “Karen is sorely missed by us all at Restoration Yard. To have ‘Karen’s Tree’ in our courtyard is an everyday reminder of her joie de vivre and will allow us to keep her in our hearts. We are looking forward to watching it flourish.”

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