Refurbishment work at Heysham play park begins to take shape

Photo Neil Cross
Local residents and a friend's group of the park have been working hard to fundraise for the redevelopment of Bay Cottage Park near Knowlys Road
Photo Neil Cross Local residents and a friend's group of the park have been working hard to fundraise for the redevelopment of Bay Cottage Park near Knowlys Road
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Refurbishment work at a Heysham play park which has been closed for nearly two years will start soon.

The Bay Cottage Play Park near Heysham cliffs was branded a safety risk and shut down in October 2015 after Lancaster City Council could no longer afford to maintain it.

Photo Neil Cross
Local residents and a friend's group of the park have been working hard to fundraise for the redevelopment of Bay Cottage Park near Knowlys Road
Niamh Barnsley-Ryan has raised over �4000 for the park

Photo Neil Cross Local residents and a friend's group of the park have been working hard to fundraise for the redevelopment of Bay Cottage Park near Knowlys Road Niamh Barnsley-Ryan has raised over �4000 for the park

A group of dedicated and enthusiastic locals formed the Friends of Bay Cottage Play Park in a bid to keep the park gates from being shut.

Since then more than £37,000 has been raised to carry out phase one of the refurbishment work.

The phase one work, which is due to start this spring, includes the installation of new equipment and a natural, soft play area.

“It has been a lot of hard work, but it is great that we are starting to move forward with creating a great new play park for Heysham,” said a Friends spokesman.

“We set out with the determination to create a new play area for the community and that is still firmly our vision.”

The Bay Cottage Play Park has received a number of grants to help fund the refurbishment which include, £30,000 from the Lancashire Environmental Fund, £3,778 from Banks Renewable, £1,000 from Lancaster Green Spaces, £569 from Galbraith Trust and Heysham youngster, Niamh Barnsley-Ryan has raised just over £2,000 (and counting for the park) through various fundraising events.

She will split the money between the park and Make A Wish Foundation.

The site is currently being cleared by Volker Brookes and then later Costain for free, which would have cost £20,000. Coun Brendan Hughes, Cabinet member with responsibility for parks and open spaces, said: “With a limited budget to be able to provide and maintain local play areas ourselves, it is fantastic to see groups of local people such as the Friends of Bay Cottage Play Area pulling together and working alongside the council to make special things happen.”

Those interested in finding out more about the playground are invited to the Friends of Bay Cottage annual meeting at 6.30pm on Tuesday February 28 at Heysham Library. There will be an exhibition from January 31, displaying work to date.