Ray Foley is pictured in his garden at his home in Shirley, West Midlands. See NTI story NTIFLOWERS. A pensioner living in a block of ex-council flats has transformed his scrubby front garden into a spectacular OASIS of colour. Ray Foley, 79, started tidying up the front garden of the apartment five years ago after he moved in following the death of his mother. Despite having no gardening experience, the retired builder planted hundreds of flowers, in a bid to brighten up the patch of land outside his home, located next to one of the busiest commuter roads into Birmingham city centre.