Grant will help create safe play area for village’s youngsters

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A village group will receive a grant to go towards revamping a rundown play area and the public will decide how much they receive.

Melbourne Sports and Playing Fields Association is looking to raise £25,000 to replace the rundown and unsafe playing equipment.

The team has worked hard to secure grant funding and are excited to have gained the support of Tesco through their Bags of Help award.

One of three groups, the team will be awarded a grant of either £8,000, £10,000 or £12,000.

Volunteer, Hannah McGouran said: “It’s really exciting knowing that we will receive one of these grants.

“It would be really nice to say thank you to the people who have supported us.”

So far they have raised £2,860. The sub-committee , made up of five parents, started fundraising and working on the project since September 2015.

The group have organised around six fundraisers including a Halloween party, clothes swap at the village hall and a Squares Raffle at the village pub, the Melbourne Arms.

This money has gone towards replacing the swings which were deemed unsafe to use.

Equipment such as the current slides will be replaced with the money from the grant and the group is also looking to create a wooden obstacle course, install a basket swing and a zip wire.

“The community has been really supportive - to raise almost £3,000 from people in the village is amazing,” added Hannah.

“Most of the equipment is almost 20 years old. It wasn’t falling down but the some of the swings were unsafe and the rest is very rundown.”

Melbourne Sports and Playing Fields Association was formed to focus on raising funds to replace the play equipment with the key objective to provide a safe and stimulating environment for children to encourage physical activity and support the mental wellbeing for young families.