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Children celebrate opening of second new play park in Norfolk town since 2016

PUBLISHED: 11:35 02 December 2018 | UPDATED: 13:45 03 December 2018

The official opening of the play park in North Walsham. Picture: John Newstead Photography

The official opening of the play park in North Walsham. Picture: John Newstead Photography

John Newstead Photography

From being a town with a dearth of children’s play equipment on offer, North Walsham can now boast a good selection, with more to follow.

The official opening of the play park in North Walsham. Picture: John Newstead PhotographyThe official opening of the play park in North Walsham. Picture: John Newstead Photography

North Walsham Play’s (NWP) second play park project in the town, a new £90,000 facility within the memorial park, was officially opened on Saturday, December 1.

The community group raised the money in just one year, with North Norfolk District Council’s big society fund providing £10,500, and North Walsham Community Shop giving the last £902.87 needed to make the dream become reality.

It follows the group’s Woodville Park in the town, which opened last June. That £40,000 project was funded by NNDC, as well as its big society fund, plus donations.

Working with North Walsham Town Council, the group now plans to give the Trackside park in the town, near the train station, a makeover and is also looking at an outside gymnasium for adults and children.

The official opening of the play park in North Walsham. The ribbon was cut by Town Mayor and Trustee of North Walsham Play Barry Hester, Cllr Penfold from NNDC Big Society's Panel and Founder and Trustee of North Walsham Play, Matthew Smith. Picture: John Newstead PhotographyThe official opening of the play park in North Walsham. The ribbon was cut by Town Mayor and Trustee of North Walsham Play Barry Hester, Cllr Penfold from NNDC Big Society's Panel and Founder and Trustee of North Walsham Play, Matthew Smith. Picture: John Newstead Photography

The group’s trustee and founder Matthew Smith, who received the town council’s community award for 2016/17 for his fundraising efforts, said: “The ribbon was cut by town mayor and trustee of North Walsham Play Barry Hester, Saul Penfold, from NNDC big society’s panel, and myself.

“This £90,000 park is the second brought about by NWP since February 2016, and is the town’s biggest new play facility for children up to 12.

“It’s Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) compliant and features wheelchair-accessible equipment, such as a roundabout, and a Tango face-to-face swing seat where baby and adult can sit facing each other.

“The park’s all based on a castle and ship theme, as per local children’s feedback.”

Work on the new park was carried out by Hag SMP Ltd.

It will be owned by the town council and open and accessible 365 days a year.

NWP formed in early 2016 and is working in partnership with the town council to address the lack of play equipment in and around North Walsham. The group wants to introduce new and exciting play equipment into the town, making it a ‘go to’ destination for families in and around North Norfolk.

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