Following the Community Wellbeing Day last October a working group has been formed to raise the funds and over see the project to install a new playground in Arnside. The playground stall was very busy on that day with both parents and children wanting to express their views on both the state of the current playground and their thoughts on what should be in its place. The children particularly were bursting with great ideas about what to do on the site of the current playground and we had lots of drawings to work with.
The Group – Arnside Playground Working Group, is made up of four members of Arnside Parish Council and three enthusiastic and interested residents with both experience of fundraising and organising village events. Most importantly they have children who use the current playground.
After talking to the local authority and other parks and playground groups in the area, three potential suppliers were contacted and given a brief based on the feedback from the Wellbeing Day.
During November and December they all visited Arnside and carried out detailed site surveys. They now have no illusions about what the Arnside weather conditions can throw at the equipment! In January, presentations and costings were received from all three suppliers.
They were all exciting schemes, and we could have chosen any one of them, but one stood out above all the others. It represents great value for money, with lots of new equipment for Arnside children of all ages. There are plenty of pieces of equipment for both group and solo play, sensory play and they have really thought about accessibility.
Now we just need to raise the funds to pay for it. As a community, we have done it once and on the Working Group we are all convinced we can do it again. The Parish Council have already secured a grant of £10,000 and the Working Group has since received a donation from Councillor McSweeney of £500, and two generous donations from the Arnside Community Fireworks Committee and The Albion Community Fund. Other local businesses have also promised to contribute, and we will be talking to them in the coming months. We have identified other potential sources of grant funding and will no doubt be spending the next few months filling in the paperwork. But we will also need help from you!
If anyone has any bright ideas as to how to raise funds or feels they would like to hold an event, the Working Group stand ready to support you. In the meantime, we are going to concentrate on a couple of major fund-raising events.
For our first fund raiser we plan to hold a Coronation Picnic on the Memorial Playing Field on Sunday 7th May. We have gone for the Sunday as we think a lot of people will want to watch the Coronation itself on television on Saturday the 6th. But after the success of the Platinum Jubilee Picnic last year, hopefully everyone can get involved and we can raise lots of money to help us on our way!
Keep your eyes peeled for further events later in the year & you feel you can help in any way please get in touch