Volunteers receive £10,000 donation from The Barbour Foundation to restore Readhead Park in South Shields
A group of volunteers who are working to restore a Victorian park in South Shields have received a £10,000 donation to help their cause.
The Friends of Readhead Park group was set up in June this year by the newly-elected independent councillor for the Westoe ward Glenn Thompson.
At the time, Coun Thompson said the initiative was launched in a bid to restore the popular park to its former glory, after residents had expressed concern about its deteriorating condition.
It currently has around 30 volunteers who meet up regularly to maintain the area and now a £10,000 donation from the Barbour Foundation will allow them to carry out significant restoration work in the park.
Set up in 1988, the Foundation makes donations to a wide variety of charities in the North East.
This donation will cover the costs of a replacement roof and renovation work to a park outbuilding to support the group’s activities.
It will also fund the installation of CCTV, a new gated area for dogs to be kept on leads, plus additional picnic tables, waste bins and lighting in the park.
Coun Thompson said the donation, combined with the amount of support from the community that the scheme has seen, were a sign of good things to come for the park.
He commented: “Working closely with the modern-day needs of park users and in times where money is hard to come by, I always felt community involvement would be rewarded and this shows that, with fantastic support from the Barbour Foundation in backing this initiative.
“This donation, along with great community involvement in general maintenance support to the council maintenance programme will lead to big improvements in the park.
“I can’t thank them enough and I will ensure this generosity will be made good use of for the people of South Shields.”
In addition, a noticeboard has been donated by the organisers of Westoe Fayre, which will display the group’s upcoming activities.
Coun Thompson added: “This is really appreciated and another sign of the improving community cohesion.”
Anyone interested in volunteering should contact Coun Thompson on 07971364221.
Follow the Westoe Ward Facebook page for updates on the group.