New park to remember lost children

Officially opening the Murton Memorial Park, Sonia Peart Chair of the Park Group, Coun Tom Pinkney Chair of Murton Parish Council, County Councillor Alan Napier, PC Martin Thursfield, and former councillor Alice Naylor.

Officially opening the Murton Memorial Park, Sonia Peart Chair of the Park Group, Coun Tom Pinkney Chair of Murton Parish Council, County Councillor Alan Napier, PC Martin Thursfield, and former councillor Alice Naylor.

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A PARK dedicated to villagers who lost their lives at a tragically young age has been officially unveiled.

Murton Memorial Park has been created to give the next generations of children a place to enjoy, with young people drafted in by community leaders to have a say in what improvements were made as part of the £50,000 project.

It is hoped they will care and respect the play area because it has been set aside in tribute to youngsters who have died through accidents and illnesses.

Favourite pieces of equipment have been revamped, and the park has welcomed the additions of swings, including one which can be used by disabled people, an aerial runway, slides, frames and a skating area.

The project, led by Murton Parish Council with the support of a community-led steering group and Durham County Council, has also been backed by the police, who have held fund-raising events to add to the cash pot, and businesses which made other donations.

The majority of the funds for the park were pledged by the parish council, which gifted £30,000, with the village’s county councillor Alan Napier and now former county councillor Alice Naylor offering the remainder from their neighbourhood budgets, with further money given to cover the cost of lighting.

The park was unveiled at a fun day, with parish council leader Tom Pinkney and Coun Napier heading up the ceremony.

Police Community Support Officer Linzi Graham said: “Around 300 turned up, and there was something for everybody to get involved in. They were all pleased to help to rebuild the park.”

Other activities included a skating contest organised by Groundwork North East, a visit from a fire engine and police van, a chance to try out a climbing wall and a five-a-side football tournament.

The event also helped to raise a further £600 through a refreshment sale.