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Grant of almost £50,000 awarded to villages to improve play area for youngsters

PUBLISHED: 14:57 06 October 2017 | UPDATED: 14:57 06 October 2017

A design of how the new Ringsfield and Weston play area will look. Picture: Action Play and Leisure.

A design of how the new Ringsfield and Weston play area will look. Picture: Action Play and Leisure.

Archant

Youngsters at two neighbouring villages are set to get an improved play area thanks to a grant of almost £50,000.

The current play area at Ringsfield and Weston Village Hall. Picture: Sarah Statt.The current play area at Ringsfield and Weston Village Hall. Picture: Sarah Statt.

The money was awarded by WREN’s FCC Community Action Fund, and will be used to refurbish the play area at Ringsfield and Weston Village Hall, which was last updated in 1998.

The parish council will be using the grant of £49,145.95 to purchase and install new play equipment including an activity shelter, play tower, two flat and two cradle seat swings, a basket swing, wheelchair accessible roundabout, seesaw and an aerial runway for the adjacent recreation field.

Prior to the new equipment being installed, the funding will also allow the team to set up the site and carry out the necessary groundworks, and allow for grass mats and new turf to be laid as well as installing Tiger Mulch around the roundabout.

Louise Botham, chairman of Ringsfield and Weston Parish Council, believes the facility will make a huge difference to the lives of people living in the area.

She said: “This project will provide a real boost to the people of Ringsfield and Weston. It’s fantastic that WREN has awarded us this money and we’re really looking forward to our improved play area taking shape in the spring.”

The council hopes the play area, located off Church Road in Ringsfield, will be ready by early next summer.

As part of the project, councillors are also planning to lay a path alongside the edge of the current village hall car park to make access to the planned enlarged entrance gate easier and safer. There will also be a patio area beside the gate for buggies and bikes to be parked and part of the north fence will be moved back to square off the play area and increase the size allowing extra room for the new equipment.

A grant received from the Adams Charity will be used to purchase a wheelchair accessible picnic bench made from recycled material, and village residents

Norman and Christine Simister, who were involved with the planning of the original play area, have donated a Glasdon bench also made from recycled material. The family of the late Stuart Wilson, who was involved in the development of the village hall, are also funding a memorial bench, which will be placed inside the play area.

The project is expected to cost £53,000 in total, with the rest of the funding coming from donations made by local companies and individuals along with past fundraising.

Further events are being held to reach the final total, with two more indoor car boot sales planned on March 3 and 17, 2018, at the village hall.

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