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Consultants appointed to deliver Ballymagroarty and Kilfennan play parks

23 March 2016

The Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council has welcomed news that Council has appointed contractors to deliver the Ballymagroarty and Kilfennan play provision sites as part of the Social Investment Fund – Invest in Play Project.

Councillor Elisha McCallion explained that Council is working in close partnership with OFMDFM, the Caw/Nelson Drive Action Group and Ballymagroarty Community Association to compete the detailed design, costings and procurement of contractors on this innovative community project that will see huge benefits for those living in the areas.

Mayor McCallion said this is another example of local communities identifying local need in their local areas and working with the Council and funders to secure relevant funding to provide much needed facilities. The move also follows on from the recent appointment of contractors tasked with the delivery of play provision at Ballyarnett and the Brandywell.

“The importance of play and outdoor activities for children cannot be understated, particularly at a time when television and computer games feature so prominently in the everyday lives. The Council is committed to play provision in the city and district and to actively encourage children and young people to get involved in play and an active healthy lifestyle. We are delighted that communities in Kilfennan and Ballymagroarty are benefitting from this funding and are confident this investment will significantly benefit families in these areas.”

Linda Watson, co-ordinator of Caw/Nelson Drive Action Group said: “We are delighted that the project is finally moving forward with the appointment of the design team.  We look forward to working with them and on the 31st March the proposed plans will be on display in our Centre for the local residents to come and view.  If all goes according to plan we will have a new play park, changing facilities and 3G pitch in Caw/Nelson Drive by the summer of 2017 which we are all very excited about.”

Speaking about the Delivering Social Change framework, OFMDFM Junior Ministers Jennifer McCann and Emma Pengelly said: “The Executive is determined to make a positive difference to people’s lives and build a better, brighter and more prosperous future for all. Initiatives like the Invest in Play Project have a real impact on the local areas and are a good example of where we work closely with the local community to create positive changes with the resources available. Through projects like this we will not only empower local people but provide the entire community with a renewed sense of hope and purpose.” 

Christy Daniels from the Ballymagroarty Community Association said: “This is a much needed and welcome investment for the area. We are in an area of high deprivation and lack adequate community facilities for the people of this area. The BCA and other community groups have been working tirelessly on this project for many years and it's great to see the work paying off and the project coming to fruition. It will be great to see the community finally have a facility that can be used by everyone.”

Detailed plans will be complete by the end of March and advertisement placed for the procurement of contractors from April onwards.

Subject to Departmental approvals it is planned that works will commence on site toward the end of this year or very early January 2017 and work will completed, as originally envisaged, by the end of the summer.