The Memorial Park had a “Friends of” organisation when the major investment happened in 2016, involving the new play items, trim trail equipment, new paths and tennis courts.
In the strange times in which we live at present, there are a lot more people in the park who are walking, running or exercising and spending more of their time there. The Memorial Park is really benefitting from these additional visits in the summer months now people are encouraged outdoors. Unfortunately, it is also suffering a good deal more from littering, particularly from those from outside the town who are bringing takeaway containers, drink and also “happy gas” cannister. Residents have commented on this problem and some are sufficiently annoyed by this that they want to reform the Friends of Memorial Park.
The Town Council would want to support this and has the experience of the previous Friends set up to draw on, so setting up the aims and objectives would be fairly easy. Therefore, the Council is launching an appeal for residents to volunteer to get involved. The central aim would be “to improve the green space and facilities of the Memorial Park”.
The objectives that were agreed in 2016 would still be appropriate or could be quickly adapted, if felt necessary. These were:
v Involving local people in improving our community.
v Promoting the health and well-being of the residents of the area.
v Promoting the heritage and historical knowledge of the park.
v To carry out and promote both environmental improvement and practical conservation, to educate, encourage and support the local population in environmental practice by working with statutory and non statutory agencies.
v Promoting sport, community recreation and play facilities.
v To raise funds and receive contributions where appropriate to finance the work.
v To publicise and promote work.
v Work with similar groups and exchange information and advice with them.
If necessary, the Council would help with the procedural side, with things like a bank account, insurance arrangements, training courses and event coordination. Cllr. Dave Reilly is a County, Borough and Town councillor and may be able to help with a starter fund for a Friends group.
Membership of the Friends of Memorial Park would be open to anyone who is interested in helping the group to achieve its aims. Initially, to have a recognised committee would need three people initially and to hold an interest meeting. Given the current guidelines, that would probably be in the park itself.
Anyone interested in joining the group should contact the Town Council at the Town Hall at firstname.lastname@example.org or 01675 463326 or the Community Hub on 01675 238309.