Have a swinging time at the park

Parents and children at the new Ashenhurst play park opening
Parents and children at the new Ashenhurst play park opening

A new £55,000 park area has been opened on the site of a former community centre.

Following completion of a two-year project which included a major fundraising campaign, the facility, on Dineley Avenue, Todmorden, is now open to provide a safe place for young people in the Ashenhurst area to play.

Nicola Szymik-Walters, chairwoman of local community group APART, which has been instrumental in the project’s success, said: “I’d like to praise the local community for their dedication in raising the funds and their input in getting the park for the benefit of their families.

“The park has already proven a success with the children of Ashenhurst and will continue to be of great benefit for years to come.

“It is great to see the hard work pay off and have somewhere for our children to go where they can safely enjoy themselves.

“On behalf of the APART group I would like to thank all who donated to make this venture possible.”

The initial idea to create a new play area was put forward by local residents two years ago at a Todmorden ward forum.

Kirsten Fussing, Calderdale Council’s neighbourhood co-ordinator for Todmorden, assisted by helping to secure Calderdale Council funding for the project.

Sita and Todmorden Town Council also contributed funding, and the APART group organised a programme of fundraising events to generate the rest of the money required for construction work to go-ahead.

“There was a problem with safety of kids on the estate - there was nowhere to play and cars were going up and down the road,” Kirsten said.

“Local youngsters helped to design the play area and they are looking after it.

“It’s put that land back into use for the benefit of the community.”

APART has further plans for the future, which include using some of the park area to plant fruit and vegetables using the Incredible Edible scheme, and also create a community growing space featuring raised beds.