It was interesting to hear on the local news the other day that Aylesbury Council had secured a 300,000 grant from The Big Lottery Fund for the development of play areas on three sites around Aylesbury. The grant went towards the paying of wages for a Play Coordinator and two Play rangers, and play equipment on the three sites.What a contrast to the funding of Play Areas in Chipping Norton. The main Play Area is The Common.
(1) The Common has no Parking facilities apart from parking on the main road on a corner. Families with young children on a long car Journey wishing to stop as they travel through Chipping Norton are unable to do so safely. Parents who live in Chipping Norton with young children cannot drive there and use the play area and park safely. Why is it not possible for a Parking area to be created which could be accessed from the main road - alongside the road which goes to the Mount, where there is already a gate for the grass cutter to gain access.
(2) The Common has no toilets for parents or children to use. If we wish this play area to be used to its fullest, then these facilities need to be provided. A new toilet block with lockable doors and adequate outside lighting could be rebuilt on the site of the old toilet blocks
The question has to be asked then as to why over the last few years there has being no application made to The Big Lottery Fund to secure funding to enable the upgrading of the common in this way. Why have members of the Town Councils Recreation Committee not applied to get funding for this type of project Because on reading The Big Lottery web page this exactly what the funding can be used for.
Lottery millions making playful ideas a reality
Release Date: 28 March 2006
Areas: South East England
Areas of interest: Charity, Childcare, Education, Youth
Programmes: Children's Play
The Big Lottery Fund wants projects to bounce in with innovative ways of capturing the playful imagination of children and young people to make a big difference to the way our children play in their neighbourhoods. Playful Ideas is the new Lottery good cause programme seeking to fund projects with a creative and novel approach to play. This programme, open for applications today, forms part of the Fund's 155 million commitment to support children's play. The Playful Ideas programme focuses on originality and will empower children to have more choice and control over their play activities. There is 16 million of funding available across England until 31 December 2007 with grants of between 10,000 and 250,000 available.
Alison Rowe, Big Lottery Fund Head of South East region, said: "With the 16 million Playful Ideas programme, we are focussing on innovation. We want ideas that are new and different, that will challenge and stimulate children promoting their greater well-being. In addition, under the Children's Play programme there is more than 17 million available to local authority areas in the South East for local play schemes that have already proved popular, like BMX and skateboard parks, mobile play teams and small public playgrounds."The Big Lottery Fund wants every community to get involved in creating play adventures that allow children to grow through a wider range of high quality, inclusive and accessible play experiences. Applications for funding must come from play partnerships led by the local authorities, who will develop children's play strategies for their areas.
This Question needs to be put to all the members of the Recreation Committee The common needs to be updated with these facilities and in this way the usage by young children and their families would increase. Then another part of Chipping Nortons crumbing infrastructure would be brought up to date,
One can only ask where our Town Council are as far as getting this type of funding is concerned. And why are they yet again letting down the young families and their children in not providing the up to date facilities which are needed.
This subject is on the Agenda of this week's WODC Cabinet meeting. Read the report here: http://www.westoxon.gov.uk/files/reports/7353.pdf