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Young fundraisers key to new skate track and playground in West Winch

Back row L-R: Dave Lamacraft (Aiva's father) and Frank Dutton, parish councillor
Middle row L-R Sarah Watts, parish clerk, Lola Frary, Michelle Summers, parish council vice chair and Jo Crisp, Play Facilities Group
Front row Aiva Lamacraft

Published: Wednesday, 7th December 2022

A new playground and skate pump track in West Winch have been officially opened with help from two young fundraisers whose enthusiasm was key to making the project happen.

Aiva Lamacraft, 9, and Lola Frary, 12, got the ball rolling and, with help from the borough council’s Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) and the FCC Communities Foundation, the new facilities were funded. They were officially opened on 26 November.

Cllr Richard Blunt, the borough council’s cabinet member for regeneration and development, and chair of its CIL panel, said:

“Well done to Aiva and Lola for their commitment to improving play facilities in their village, which has ultimately resulted in a fantastic new facility for this village.

“CIL funding was designed for projects like this, which add real amenity value to communities. I hope the people of West Winch enjoy the new equipment for many years to come.”

As part of their fundraising efforts, Aiva ran 60 miles and Lola threw basketball hoops for an hour every day for a month. Between them they raised around £1,000.

The playground has been improved with new equipment including a zip wire and climbing frames. The old skate park has been replaced with a new skate pump track. The main funding was a £99,989 grant from FCC Communities Foundation and £50,000 from the Borough Council, supported by community fundraising.

West Winch Parish Councillor Michele Summers expressed her delight that the facilities are now in use:

“This vital facility is already making a real difference to the village, especially the children and young people. We are extremely grateful to all funders as we would not have been able to go ahead without their support.”

FCC Communities Foundation is a not-for-profit business that awards grants for community projects. Richard Smith, FCC Communities Foundation grant manager, said: “It’s wonderful to see something we have funded finally open and ready to make such a difference to children and young people across West Winch. FCC Communities Foundation is always happy to consider grant applications for projects that benefit local communities and this is a great example of what can be achieved.”

The next round of CIL funding opens to receive applications on 1 January and closes on 1 February. Full details are available on the council website.

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