Harpenden playground revamp about to get started

PUBLISHED: 17:00 29 August 2017

The £5 SPAWG Jute bags have been taken to Austrialia.

The £5 SPAWG Jute bags have been taken to Austrialia.

Archant

A Harpenden playground revamp group has smashed their fundraising target and will start working to breathe life back into another well-used activity area.

Members of the Southdown Play Areas Working Group receiving the cheque,  presented by then Harpenden Town Council Mayor, Brian Ellis.Members of the Southdown Play Areas Working Group receiving the cheque, presented by then Harpenden Town Council Mayor, Brian Ellis.

Southdown Play Areas Working Group (SPAWG) has raised nearly £20,000 in their bid to refurbish its second playground in four years, Parva Close on the Cross Farm Estate, Southdown.

Work will soon begin on the first stage of the renovation - to kit out the area with new football goals, a basketball court, and a trim trail.

The group was set up when a dodgy slide had to be removed from the Oakley Road playground in 2013, leaving just four pieces of equipment for more than 2,000 households to use.

After installing a slide and receiving more than £3,000 from the then-outgoing Harpenden mayor, Brian Ellis, SPAWG turned their attention and funding efforts to Parva Close.

Southdown Play Areas Working Group (SPAWG) during their first fundraising campaign. Photo courtesy of David Whitbread from the Harpenden Photographic SocietySouthdown Play Areas Working Group (SPAWG) during their first fundraising campaign. Photo courtesy of David Whitbread from the Harpenden Photographic Society

Co-chair of SPAWG, Glyn Goodwin, said she was excited to get the project started: “[The first playground] has been such a boost for us, psychologically. It’s always heaving with children, certainly every holiday and after school, and that has really supported us with this second playground.”

She thanked everyone who has donated to the cause.

The second stage will see the fenced-off playground replaced with new equipment and installing a climbing frame for older children.

In order to raise more money, SPAWG are selling “I heart Harpenden” or “I heart Southdown” Jute bags for £5 - two have already been bought from Australia. They are being sold at Harpenden Cycles in Southdown, or on a stall at the Plough and Harrow pub on September 21.

During September, grocery shoppers can vote in Harpenden’s Waitrose with their green chips for SPAWG’s second stage to receive money.

Nearly £1,400 was collected towards the first stage at a quiz night - as it was so successful, SPAWG are hosting another one in aid of the second stage.

This will take place on September 16 at Crabtree Fields Scout hut in Waldegrave Park from 7pm to 11pm. Tickets are £13 per person and include a fish and chips supper. Eight people per quiz team, and individuals will be allocated a table.

To buy tickets, or a Jute bag, visit www.facebook.com/Southdownplayareas or email southdownplayareas@gmail.com

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