Official opening at long-awaited park

Celebrations: Families and councillors mark the official oepning of Gorsey Bank play area.
Celebrations: Families and councillors mark the official oepning of Gorsey Bank play area.
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Families celebrated on Saturday after a threatened £36,000 project to resurrect a town’s recreation ground was officially launched.

A multi-use games area, zip wire, cradle swing and activity unit are among the attractions at the new Gorsey Bank play area in Wirksworth

Grand Opening: Jacon Cousins, ten, and Billy Rowlatt, eleven, have fun on the basket swing at the official opening of the new play facilities at Gorsey Bank in Wirksworth.

Grand Opening: Jacon Cousins, ten, and Billy Rowlatt, eleven, have fun on the basket swing at the official opening of the new play facilities at Gorsey Bank in Wirksworth.

Derbyshire County Council pulled the plug on the long-awaited scheme last July, leaving residents furious.

The funding was withdrawn due to government spending cuts.

But in January councillors announced they would now be receiving money, meaning the new children’s play area’s could be built – and after six months the facility was finally up and running.

Chairman of the District of the Derbyshire Dales Cllr Judith Twigg performed the official ribbon cutting ceremony with help from local children.

Grand Opening: Oscar Cousins, eight, tries out the zip wire at the official opening of the new play facilties at Gorsey Bank in Wirksworth.

Grand Opening: Oscar Cousins, eight, tries out the zip wire at the official opening of the new play facilties at Gorsey Bank in Wirksworth.

Cllr Twigg said: “The support of the local community, led by Gorsey Bank Residents’ Association, has been tremendous, and the district council is delighted to provide a facility that will get more people active and leading healthier lives.”

Gorsey Bank resident Julie Stone, whose five-year-old son Kanye loves the new facility, said: “This is a fantastic place for local children and already it is incredibly well used.

“It brings together different ages and there’s something for everyone.”

Derbyshire County Council’s cabinet member for young people, Barry Lewis, added: “This is a marvellous new play area for the children of families in and around Wirksworth and I hope they enjoy it for years to come.

“This is the latest Derbyshire Playbuilder site to open and is one of 23 created across the county thanks to £912,000 funding the county council has shared.

“We’re committed to providing children with a healthy start in life and this new play area will give youngsters the opportunity to have fun and get active.”

Thirty-five thousand pounds of funding came from a Derbyshire County Council Playbuilder grant and additional cash from Dales Housing,

Cllr Garry Purdy from the county council’s community fund and £1,000 raised by Gorsey Bank Residents’ Association.