Playground gets facelift through funding seized from criminals
A much-loved community playground in north Wales has had a facelift with brand new equipment thanks to cash seized from criminals.
Efenechtyd Leisure Park in Pwllglas, Denbighshire received a range of new facilities thanks to money taken from the proceeds of crime through the Your Community, Your Choice funding initiative.
On Friday December 1 the playground was visited by North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Andy Dunbobbin.
While there, the PCC met members of Efenechtyd Community Council, including Chair Wynn Jones, and local youngsters from the Miri Meithrin nursery who were present to enjoy the new facilities on offer.
The Your Community, Your Choice fund supports grass-roots projects and comes partly from money seized by the courts through the Proceeds of Crime Act, with the rest from the Police and Crime Commissioner.
Members of Efenechtyd Community Council were conscious that the previous facilities at the site – a pitch with two goalposts – were inadequate.
As part of the upgrade, the play area now offers new equipment for younger children, teenagers and parents – including a model police car specially decorated by North Wales Police’s fleet team.
The area is disability friendly with braille signage and wheelchair access, as well as added flower and vegetable troughs to enable users to grow their own produce.
The local church in Efenechtyd plans to organise local events, such as a photography competition and flower festival, and the local Muslim community in Ruthin plan to use the area to organise breakfast and coffee meetings, aiming to promote an understanding of diverse cultures locally.
Police and Crime Commissioner Andy Dunbobbin said: “It was a pleasure to visit Efenechtyd to see how Your Community, Your Choice funding is being put to good use.
“I saw first-hand the great sense of community spirit in the area, and I respected the way in the Community Council had worked closely with those who live in Pwllglas and Efenechtyd to take their views into account in developing this project. It was important that all cultures, backgrounds and ages of residents were considered and represented well in the development process.
“Efenechtyd Community Council are worthy recipients of Your Community, Your Choice funding and I’m glad to see this project support my policing priority for North Wales in supporting communities and delivering safer neighbourhoods.”
Pat Astbury, Clerk of Efenechtyd Community Council, said: “Following a review of the resources in the outdated park, Efenechtyd Community Council made the decision to look at ways to fund a complete overhaul of the area.
“Bids were submitted to various funding organisations and one of the successful bids was from Your Community Your Choice.
“We used the monies from that fund to purchase a ‘police car’ and North Wales Police very kindly customised it for us. The local Miri Meithrin are using the park when weather permits along with many others from the locality.”
North Wales Police Assistant Chief Constable Chris Allsop said: “Efenechtyd’s upgraded leisure park reflects a commitment to crime reduction, enhanced safety, and community wellbeing, which strongly aligns with North Wales Police’s vision for safer communities. This initiative is a testament to the power of local projects in addressing policing priorities, creating a more inclusive environment for all residents. I thank Efenechtyd Community Council for their efforts.
The Your Community, Your Choice fund has celebrated its tenth anniversary in 2023 and, over the past ten years, a total of over £500,000 has been awarded to more than 150 projects working to reduce crime in their areas and to support the priorities in the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Police and Crime Plan.
This next wave of the Your Community, Your Choice funding initiative is now open. A total of £60,000 in grants is available to fund community group projects in North Wales.
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