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£150,000 for Haywoods play area

By Staffordshire Newsletter  |  Posted: April 01, 2014

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YOUNGSTERS in the Haywoods are to get a new raft of play equipment costing £150,000, the Newsletter can reveal.

Three separate contracts have been awarded to provide a new skatepark, BMX track and multi-use games area (Muga).

Colwich Parish Council chairman Councillor Paul Gilbert said he hoped the facilities, on the Jubilee playing fields, would be in place this autumn.

He said the project was the first of a two stage development plan which would probably wipe out the council’s £277,770 reserves, much of which has been saved up over the past five years.

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Councillor Gilbert said: “(The money) has been earmarked for quite some time. We knew it was going to be very expensive especially for a parish council and that it would take a while to build up the funds.

“I was hoping to get it installed in time for the summer holidays but I can’t guarantee it – it could be the autumn by the time we finally get organised with the contractors. It won’t take long.”

Phase two, which will also be done this year, will include the refurbishment of an unused office on the field to use as a base for the parish council, with the existing base - the parish centre, St Mary’s Road, Little Haywood, being rented or sold off.

Security including cameras will also be installed.

“We thought that was an ideal place for the parish office – it’s in the centre between the two villages and gives us the space and parking which is very difficult at the existing building.”

“We probably won’t have too much money left but it’s all for the benefit of the community.”

The council will hold a consultation with youngsters next month.

Councillor Gilbert has pursued a strategy of lowering the parish council’s precept, which contributes to council tax bills.

“The council tax will not be going up. We are operating on a sliding scale down and we shall continue that policy as long as I’m there.We shall not be asking the tax payer for any more money even if the pot is empty.

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