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Recreation Area: Almost There

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Although the Recreation Area is still at a stage of being developed, the finishing line is coming into view.

Reflecting on what has happened during the past year, it is clear that much has been achieved:

  • Existing facilities have seen increasing use and enjoyment by individuals covering a wide age range. These include groups concerned with particular sports, the Primary School, visitors to the Hideaway camp site, visiton to families in Husthwaite and residents from neighbooring villages.
  •  As part of the programme planned to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee, the Recreation Area served as an excellent venue for a range of activities organised for children on the Saturday morning. Those present were wildly excited and seemed to be in perpetual motion!
  • It is estimated that over 200 children, young people and adults have enjoyed the extensive range of provision which seems to be widely admired, even envied by some!
  • A small group of six, concerned with the development of this area, undertook a whole day's training on Risk Assessment, led by a tutor arranged through RoSPA. A regular programme of inspections by this group is now in hand with appropriate records and follow-up action where necessary.

Since the summer, 2 major additions have been made and are now in place:

  • A picnic table on a paved area near the Multiuse Games Area. This has been funded largely through a generous grant from the George A. Moore Foundation.
  • Just inside the entrance to the site, there is now an impressive pavilion with adjacent store, built to a very high standard by Graham Douthwaite and Mervyn Duffield in conjunction with their respective colleagues. This new facility has been possible, due largely to a grant of £1O,OOO secured under the 'Awards For All' scheme, administered by ‘The Big Lottery'. In addition, a generous contribution from the Orchards of Husthwaite' project has funded finishing touches to the inside - floor tiles, paint, storage provision and furniture.

Looking ahead to 2013, funding bids at various stages of preparation aim to provide the following additions:

  • A cycle rack, requested by the children.
  • A small outdoor-fitness gymnasium comprising 3 items, requested by some of the older residents of the village.
  • Upgrading of the access track from the road to the gated entrance.
  • The possibility of Volley Ball provision (inspired by the Olympic Games?) Feedback on how desirable this is would be welcomed.

Ideally, we hope these aspirations might become reality by May, when , perhaps, we can arrange a final official opening, with appropriate celebrations.

Peter Davison