Bid for new £90,000 play park in Norfolk market town takes step forward

From left, North Walsham and District Round Table's (NWRT) Chris Harding, North Walsham Play (NWP) t

From left, North Walsham and District Round Table's (NWRT) Chris Harding, North Walsham Play (NWP) trustee Barry Hester and founder Matthew Smith, NWRT chairman James Cobbold and fundraiser Ollie Smith, and NWP trustee and deputy mayor Mary Seward at the presentation of a cheque to help fund a revamp of the Memorial Park playground. Picture: Stuart Anderson - Credit: Archant

The youngsters of North Walsham are well on their way to getting a refurbished play park to replace one in the town centre that has been there since 1998.

And a campaign by community group North Walsham Play to fund the £90,000 revamp of the Memorial Park facility has just received a £1,500 boost.

North Walsham and District Round Table has handed over a cheque for the amount towards the park, after partnering with North Walsham Play to run a festive 'Santa's sleigh' fundraiser which saw Father Christmas visit roads around the town last year.

Round Table chairman James Cobbold said: 'With the town getting bigger we are doing more roads, and we needed more people to help.

'So we teamed up with North Walsham Play and we're splitting the proceeds 50/50.'

Matthew Smith, North Walsham Play trustee and founder, said this would be the group's second play park project in the town - the other being at Woodville Park.

Mr Smith said the new facility would be Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) compliant and would feature wheelchair-accessible equipment, promoting inclusive play for all children.

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He said: 'North Walsham Play have very much enjoyed working with North Walsham Round Table to bring about this amazing donation.

'It's great to see the community get behind this project and support our fundraising efforts.'

Mr Smith said they had so far raised about £58,000 towards the park, since the project was launched eight months ago.

The new play park will include a roundabout, swings, a spring seesaw and play frames modelled after a castle and a ship, which will both include slides.

The facility will be open and accessible 365 days a year.

As well as the Santa's sleigh, the town's Round Table also runs a popular beer festival each year in August, which raises up to £10,000.

All money made goes back into the community.

Other donations the group has made so far this year have included £400 to Cromer-based charity About With Friends, and £500 to help fund a new defibrillator at North Walsham Town Football Club.

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