Funding makes for Happy Hippos in Longbarn, Warrington

6th July 2016

Children in Longbarn, Warrington are set to get a revamped and remodelled play area thanks to a £47,150 grant from Environmental funding body WREN.

The money, awarded by WREN’s FCC Community Action Fund to the Land Trust, will be used to reconfigure the current play area to, making it a safe and secure space to play for children of all ages and abilities. Outdated equipment will also be replaced with brand new play equipment at the play area affectionately known as ‘’The Hippos’’ by local residents in Longbarn.

Mary Doyle, Landscape and Community Officer of the Land Trust who own the land on which the play area sits, believes the facility will make a huge difference to the lives of people living in the area.

She says: “This project will provide a real boost to the people of Longbarn.  The play area is well used and this investment will ensure that it continues to benefit the community for years to come.  We’re really looking forward to our play area taking shape over the coming months.’’

WREN is a not-for-profit business that awards grants for community, biodiversity and heritage projects from funds donated by FCC Environment through the Landfill Communities Fund.

Richard Smith, WREN’s grant manager for Warrington, says: “We’re delighted to be supporting the Hippos Play Area project and pleased our funding will provide such a beautiful green space for people across Longbarn and Warrington. WREN is always happy to consider grant applications for projects that make a difference to local communities and we’re really looking forward to seeing this one take shape soon.”

Generations of children in the community have happily accessed the play area for over 40 years, but as the site has aged, much needed reconditioning is now required in order for it to be an accessible, safe and enjoyable facility for children now and for future generations.

The site takes its name from the three fixed concrete Hippos which have been in situ since the play area was first developed over 40 years ago.  One of the hippos is damaged and will have to be removed but local school children will be given the opportunity to suggest ideas for a makeover of the two much loved Hippo’s which will remain.  A new picnic area will allow parents and guardians to sit and watch over or spend some time with the children as they enjoy the new toddler friendly secure play area. The scheme will also include some accessible for all play equipment, so that all children can enjoy the new facility.  The work to improve the play area is expected to take around 2 months to complete.

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Longbarn Happy Hippos, Warrington


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