Ipswich: Cherry Lane children’s playground is set for £70,000 worth of improvements

Borough councillors from Bixley ward have made progress towards getting funding for new equipment at

Borough councillors from Bixley ward have made progress towards getting funding for new equipment at Cherry Lane Recreation ground. - Credit: Contributed

A popular children’s play area is set to have new life breathed into it thanks to a father’s fundraising efforts.

Jim Jenner, of Westbury Road, Ipswich, has secured around £70,000 to fund the revamp of Cherry Lane recreation ground, off Rushmere Road.

He became involved in the project last July because the park needed some extra attention and there had been little investment for a few years.

Mr Jenner, who lives with wife Nicola and children Christian and Charlotte, said: “I started the quest in July last year as I knew there was locality money available for such projects.

“I put in a bid at the local area forum meeting and they said they would give me £25,000 on the assumption that I would raise the remainder of the money from elsewhere.

“We managed to put a bid in for Viridor Credits Environmental Company in December and by April found out that we were successful and had managed to raise the full £70,000.”

The project received £41,788.46 from Viridor through the Landfill Communities Trust, £25,000 from the north east Ipswich area committee as well as funding from councillors in the north east of Ipswich from their locality budgets.

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Although the park has been a long-time favourite place for dog walkers and footballers, it is mostly enjoyed by youngsters.

Mr Jenner, 40, added: “Kelly Jackman tried to secure funding a couple of years ago through a programme run by Robinsons but was pipped at the last post by another park.

“It has taken up rather a lot more time than I initially expected but there is definitely light at the end of the tunnel and with a fair wind and following sea, we should have something ready to play on by Christmas.”

A public consultation on potential designs for the play area will be held at St John’s Church in Cauldwell Hall Road on Thursday, May 23.

Mr Jenner has created a Friends of Cherry Tree Park page on Facebook where donors and other interested parties can show their support and keep up-to-date with developments on the project.

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