Joy for park as £400k scheme is approved

Park View 4 U playing fields, Lytham
Park View 4 U playing fields, Lytham
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Lytham is one of ten coastal towns today receiving new funding for projects to create nearly 1,400 jobs and help with essential repairs in areas affected by the winter storms.

Park View, in Park View Road, will receive close to £400,000 to create a new visitor attraction with a state of the art sand and water play area. The area will be landscaped in a seaside theme and will used to deliver school education and activities about the natural surroundings of the coast, along with a café, creating 11 jobs.

Cath Powell MBE at Park View4U.

Cath Powell MBE at Park View4U.

More than £8.5m is being distributed to towns around England for schemes which will create tourist attractions, regenerate historic sites and provide new flood defences.

The money is being made available from the Government’s Coastal Communities Fund and will attract a further £6.2m from other private and public bodies.

Cath Powell, community development manager at Park View 4U, said: “We are absolutely delighted to have been awarded the Coastal Community Grant and we would like to thank the ministers for their belief in us. When we started out 10 years ago sand and water play was the one thing that the public asked for and now we will be able to deliver it. The design for the sand and water play is very exciting and it will fit perfectly within the park setting. It’s a triple whammy; we’re providing a new play area, creating new jobs and providing education.

“The timing couldn’t be better as it coincides with the building of the Park View Pod, from which we will be delivering environmental education so Beach Schools will now be added to the curriculum. Sand and Water play is the best medium for education. We can’t wait to get going, the whole of Lytham will be celebrating with us.”

Heather Small

Heather Small

Ten years ago the Lytham-based charity Park View 4U set out to provide a few swings and slides in a derelict park located just behind the seafront. In those 10 years the group have transformed the site and created a park with equipment for all ages from toddlers up to senior citizens.

And 10 years ago when Park View set out, the group adopted the song ‘Proud’ by Heather Small as their theme tune, and today, singer Heather Small is in Lytham to appear at the Lytham Proms Festival and plans to go down to the park and congratulate them in person.

Cath Powell MBE from Park View said: “Who would have believed that we would be granted the Coastal Community Funding and get a visit from Heather Small on the same day, we are absolutely delighted.”

Coastal Communities Minister Penny Mordaunt said: “Our Coastal Communities Fund is bringing about some really innovative projects around the country and schemes that will make a big difference to those towns affected by the winter storms.

“Seaside towns are a strong part of this country’s heritage and have huge potential to create new businesses that provide jobs.

“They are an important part of the Government’s long-term economic plan and we are determined to help these communities reach their true potential.”

Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander said: “The Coastal Communities Fund is already making a real difference to our coastal towns and helping communities regenerate their local economy. So far the scheme has already supported over 4,000 jobs and 1,000 training places up and down the country.

“I am delighted to announce an additional £8.5m for coastal projects across the country, this will help communities build a sustainable future for themselves and also benefit visitors to these seaside towns over the years to come.”

The Coastal Communities Fund was launched in 2012 to invest in seaside towns and villages, helping them achieve their economic potential, reduce unemployment and create new opportunities for young people in their local area.

It is helping seaside towns make the most of their potential by diversifying their economies and industries so they become year-round success stories. The fund has already help support around 5,000 jobs, more than 300 new business start-ups and 1,400 training places.