New play area set to open in Mattishall in time for school summer holidays

A coming soon sign currently in place on the site that will soon be developed into a new play area.

A coming soon sign currently in place on the site that will soon be developed into a new play area. Picture: Luisa Cantera - Credit: Archant

A new play area built on land that was once occupied by an old victorian school in the centre of Mattishall is set to be opened in time for school summer holidays.

Development of the site will begin in June and will include activities for children as well as gym equipment for adults.

The community has been supporting the renovation of the old school site which has been empty since 2013.

Members of the public and the Parish Council set up a committee to raise the funds needed for the development and this phase of the project is expected to cost just under £60,000.

Project manager, Katie O'Connor, said: 'It really has been hard work but worthwhile working towards a new play area and I'm so pleased that we now have a June start date for the project'.

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The site's renovation will be welcome news to many residents who had campaigned for the land to be used as a community hub after plans for the school's demolition were announced.

The school was closed in 2006 and the decision to demolish the old buildings was made in 2012 after a village referendum was held and villagers voted to replace it with a landscaped open space. However, some complained it should have been made into a community centre.

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The project has been financed by many external grants, donations from villagers and money raised at village fundraising events, as well as a substantial contribution from the Parish Council.

Fundraising is set to continue and the Play Area Committee hopes that enough money can be raised so that the second phase of the development can begin. This will allow an outdoor table tennis table and a diamond climber to be added.

The next fundraising event is set to take place between 12pm and 5pm on April 23 at Mattishall Sports & Social Club. The St George's Day Sunday Funday will include a BBQ, bouncy castle, stalls, archery, face painting and music.

Co-op card holders can also support the project through the company's Local Community Fund. A contribution will be made when cardholders buy Cop-op branded products at local stores.

If you are interested in donating towards the play area, please contact Luisa Cantera, the Parish Clerk, on 01362 858786 or

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