Get stuck in and help spruce up Lowestoft park

Nature lovers are being called upon to help spruce up a public park.

As they strive to ensure Nicholas Everitt Park in Oulton Broad, Lowestoft, is enjoyed by all for generations to come, park supporters are asking more people to roll up their sleeves and get stuck in.

The Friends of Nicholas Everitt Park, Oulton Broad in Bloom, Oulton Broad Community Enterprise – voluntary groups that work with Waveney District Council to run the 5.5 hectare Get stuck in and spruce up the park site – want to see members of the public meeting in the park once a month to get their hands dirty clearing reed beds, planting bulbs, weeding and creating wildlife habitats.

The aim is to get the whole community actively involved.

'We've been going for a few years but we're still at the beginning of it all because there's just so much to do,' said Carol Barnard, chairman of the Friends.

'It's a nice park already, but we think it could become even better. We've done a few bits and bobs like the border fencing and trees. This is the first time we've asked the public to come forward and get physically involved.'

The plan is to carry out different types of work on the third Thursday of every month, starting tomorrow at 10am.

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Volunteers will meet outside Broad House Museum and be briefed on that day's project. So far there are plans to build wildlife habitats, clear the reed bed, enjoy a picnic in the park, plant bulbs, tidy up for autumn and remove leaves before winter sets in.

'We're really keen to see people getting actively involved,' said Lucille Thacker, parks and open spaces liaison officer for the council's services partner Waveney Norse

'We've put together a long term plan for the park and a big part of that is community involvement. There's a redundant building that could be developed and a few community groups have shown an interest in, but it's all dependant on funding. At the moment we're putting together bids.

'But the projects aren't always major; it can be as simple as improving signage.'

The park supporters recently applied for Green Flag status. The Green Flag, like the Blue Flag for Britain's beaches, recognises and rewards the best green spaces in the country. If the community's bid is successful, Nicholas Everitt Park would become Lowestoft's first Green Flag site.

'To have a Blue Flag beach and a Green Flag park would be a huge boost for the town and Oulton Broad,' said Ms Barnard.

To find out more about volunteering at the park call 01502 527124 or visit www.fonep.co.uk.

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