Volunteers prepare Sunderland park for fun day

Children enjoying the craft activities and pond dipping at a previous fun day at Elba Park.
Children enjoying the craft activities and pond dipping at a previous fun day at Elba Park.
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Sunderland’s latest award-winning “park” is preparing for a fun-filled day tomorrow.

Elba Park, managed by Groundwork North East, won ‘Site of the Year’ at the annual Land Trust site awards, beating almost 60 other parks across the country.

It has already won Ranger of the Year, Best Community Space and Most Improved Site awards in the past.

The Land Trust’s estates manager Ian Kendall said: “The unstinting passion and enthusiasm of Park Ranger Andrea Baxter, managing the site on our behalf, always astounds me. It really is an outstanding community park.”

The park recently had its largest-ever corporate social responsibility volunteering event with almost 450 members of Sage Group plc, a global software company, turning up to help with site improvements, maintenance and clearance.

The work was in preparation for the annual visit by Green Flag judges, who will determine whether Elba Park remains one of the best in the country.

The volunteers worked to repair and enhance the park for the benefit of wildlife and the community.

Park Ranger Andrea Baxter said: “We were so lucky that Sage decided to come to Elba for their volunteer day.

“I suspect it may have been the biggest volunteer day Sunderland has ever had - 450 people volunteering in one place must be a record.

Now visitors can see the results of their efforts at Elba Park’s Summer Fun Day.

It takes place tomorrow from 11am to 3pm. There will be activities ranging from a craft fair and market to live music, rides, face painting, crafts and activities for children.