A ZIPWIRE and a trampoline are to be installed as part of a raft of improvements to the children's play area at Mary Stevens Park in Stourbridge.

More than £50,000 is to be spent on making the play area at the Norton park bigger, thanks to the fundraising efforts of dedicated volunteers.

The first phase of the project will cost around £55,000 - £50,000 of which has been secured by the Friends of Mary Stevens Park following a successful bid for cash to the Enovert Community Trust, an environmental body which supports community projects.

Meanwhile - the Friends group has committed £5,000 match funding and made a further successful application for grant funding through the Norton, Pedmore and Stourbridge East and Wollaston & Stourbridge Town community forum.

The project will see a zipwire and large sunken trampoline put in plus a wheelchair accessible swing and a trim trail.

Mark Gadd, chairman of the Friends of Mary Stevens Park, said: "The local community has really banded together to bring this project forward.

"The volunteers are made up of local people who are parents of or care for young children and they use the park regularly. They really care about meeting the play needs of a wider age range, providing an inclusive play space and listening to the priorities of park users.

"We are thrilled to have secured the funding for the first stage of the play area improvements, and we are hopeful of future fundraising success to enable the completion of all the planned improvements."

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The friends group have consulted regularly with the public to shape the plans for the play area improvements and they have worked closely with Dudley Council’s parks development team to help bring the scheme to fruition.

Alan Lunt, deputy chief executive at the council, said: "The play area at Mary Stevens Park is hugely popular with families, who I’m sure will welcome this investment to bring in some exciting new equipment for children in the borough."

Extra swings and new multi-play units are proposed to be installed at a later date as part of a second phase of the project, subject to funding being secured.

Work on the first phase is expected to take place this winter, so the new area can be ready in time for the spring.

Anyone interested in joining the Friends of Mary Stevens Park, or interested in developing a similar project in their local park elsewhere in the borough, is welcome to attend future meetings.

Email marystevensfriends@gmail.com for more details.