Park revamp plans get £2.4m lotto boost

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AN ambitious plan to bring one of the region’s oldest parks back to its former glory has received a major funding boost.

The Heritage Lottery Fund and Big Lottery Fund have today announced a grant of £2.45million for a scheme that will transform Durham City’s historic Wharton Park and create scores of jobs.

Additional funding, including money from Durham County Council and the council’s Durham Area Action Partnership, will take the total amount of investment in the park to £3million. The public was granted use of the park by WL Wharton in 1858 and it was the site of the first Durham Miners’ Gala in 1871.

Councillor Maria Plews, cabinet member for libraries, leisure and lifelong learning at Durham County Council, said: “This is fantastic news for Wharton Park, the Friends of Wharton Park and the local community.

“We couldn’t do this work without the help and support of lottery funding and we should all celebrate this wonderful investment.”