An inclusive slide has now been installed with help from the whole community
Councillors and residents in Earby and Sough officially cut the ribbon on a new inclusive slide in Sough Park on Saturday 14th April following a series of grant applications and fundraising efforts by Councillor Ian Lyons, who has successfully managed the project on behalf of Earby Town Council.
Cllr Lyons took up the voluntary position as a Town Councillor in August last year and has recently taken on the role of Chairman for the Playgrounds and Bus Shelters Committee.
He said, “I knew there was a real shortage of play equipment for children with disabilities because of a letter from a concerned resident in 2016. So, we’ve designed a double width slide that can be used by children and parents together. The equipment can be used by everyone, not just those with disabilities, and includes a ‘wave feature’ to make it more exciting. I’ve tried it with my own Son and it’s great fun.”
In total, the Town Council secured the £16,730 of funding necessary to pay for the slide, installation, specialist surfacing, and safety inspections, from a variety of sources. This included over £1000 of donations that Cllr Lyons raised from local residents and businesses in 2016, by cycling 1100 miles from John O Groats to Lands End. The remainder was raised through a series of successful grant applications over the last 12 months and a small amount of public funding.
Speaking at the opening event, Cllr Lyons said, “I am very grateful to everyone who made a contribution to this project. It was a real community effort to make this happen and it makes a wonderful addition to Sough Park. More specifically, I would like to thank Earby residents and local businesses for all their donations before, during, and after my cycle ride. Most notably, Prince and King financial services, Earby Autos, and the Robert Windle Trust. I would also like to give special thanks to Tesco, who made a very generous donation of £2000, following a public vote, and the National Lottery for their major contribution of £10,000, which has accelerated the project to its final completion.”
Chairman of Earby Town Council, Chris Tennant said, “I am delighted that Ian has been able to raise so much money for this worthwhile cause. Earby, Pendle and Lancashire County Council have all fully supported the project right from the start, with both funding, from the LCC Youth Champion Mark Perks, and outstanding staff support from Earby’s Clerk Katie Jeffreys and Kieron Roberts at the Pendle team, often at short notice. Between us, we have also agreed to a full insurance and maintenance package to keep it in a serviceable condition. Well done to everyone involved.”