Residents in Eastleach have thanked Cotswold District Council and Gloucestershire County Council for helping to fund the refurbishment of the village’s public play area.
Following an annual safety inspection in April 2016, the wooden play apparatus was found to be unsafe and it was clear that a major overhaul was required. The Parish Council saw this as an opportunity to create a modern public multi-age venture playground, blending in the new equipment with the existing play area. However, they knew that funding the improvements would prove to be a significant challenge.
Chairman of Eastleach Parish Council, Pete McHugh, explains how they responded:
“Quotes from contractors were quite daunting, but Eastleach people are resourceful, and groups including the Village Hall Committee and The Parish Council set about fund raising to provide a safe and secure playground which would meet our requirements over the next 20 years or so. We arranged parties, church collections, and benefited from the village’s legendary Summer Fete. Additionally, we secured some funding from local benefactors such as the Ernest Cook Trust and the Bazley family, both of whom who have long-term contacts with the village.”
“Despite these laudable efforts, we were still some way off from our target and the local Cotswold District Council Ward Member, Cllr Ray Theodoulou, encouraged us to apply to the CDC Community Projects Fund and also to the ‘Fitness Together’ scheme run by Gloucestershire County Council. We were delighted to learn that our applications were successful on both counts and this enabled us to reach our grand total a lot sooner than we expected.”
“I was very impressed by the quick and hassle-free response from both councils when we applied for the funding, and this enabled us to engage the chosen contractor, Macventure, very promptly. As a result, the work was completed by the start of the school summer holidays this year. We had a Grand Opening ceremony with tea and cakes and a ceremonial ribbon cutting – and, in true Eastleach style, everyone had a jolly good time. There were numerous people to thank, but without doubt, those who helped us at CDC and the County Council would be very high up that list.”