Tuesday, 6 March 2007

Locke Park ready for £300,000 facelift

Redcar's Locke Park is ready for a £300,000 investment to include a new pavilion and better footpath links as part of a Borough-wide environmental improvement programme.

The facelift also includes refurbishment of perimeter fencing and two park shelters and the installation of new front gates along with de-silting the lake and work to improve the surface of the tennis courts.

Redcar and Cleveland Council and the Friends of Locke Park is using funding from the Government's Neighbourhood Renewal Fund allocation to deliver recommendations from the park's Conservation and Management Plan.

The Council's Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure and Tourism Councillor Dave Fitzpatrick said: "The investment in the park is part of a much bigger commitment to ensuring we provide good facilities to create safer, strong communities across the Borough.

"We also want to encourage greater numbers of our residents and visitors to Redcar to use our green spaces to support a healthy lifestyle for themselves

"There will be other improvements to sites across the Borough, including the Valley Gardens at both Saltburn and Marske, the Coronation Park at Loftus and the Eston Recreation Ground."

For the Friends of Locke Park, the investment will be compensation for the failed bid for Heritage Lottery funding in 2005. Friends chairman Ann Best said: "We were so disappointed when we didn't get the Lottery funding, but we're over the moon now, it's absolutely super.

"The work on the paths will certainly make it a lot safer and we're already planning to see if we can get more funding to add some new children's play equipment."

The new pavilion will be for community use, including a meeting room for the Friends, disabled toilets, storeroom and a kitchen, replacing the tennis pavilion, the victim of an arson attack last year.

The perimeter path around the lake and the three main entrance paths that point the way to the Coatham Parish Church spire will be restored to their original red colour.

The Friends are now planning for their annual Gala Day in the park on Saturday, July 14, from 11am-4pm and would welcome new members. Anyone interested can contact Friends secretary Carolyn Farrance on 01642 484487 or attend the group's annual meeting on Thursday, May 17 in the Redcar Station Business Centre at 5.30pm.

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