Local residents marked the regeneration of Trentham Park in Beeston at an official relaunch event on Saturday (17 August 2019).
Under sunny skies, local residents completed a ribbon-cutting ceremony, children played with the new equipment and everyone treated themselves to free ice cream.
It followed the installation of a new slide, swings, trees, a balance beam and fencing by the organisation Groundwork while the park was closed for over two months.
Local resident Jo-Jo, who has been involved in much of the regeneration work, hailed the impact of the changes and the park’s importance.
“I fled domestic violence and met other people from church, people with dogs, and it helped me. It kept me out of trouble. It was a lifeline for me – it helps your well-being and mental health,” she said.
“Everyone wants to keep it nice. We’ve been blessed this year with the rain and want to keep it up and move on to bigger and better things.”
Another local resident, Shabana Wakoub, who has three children added:
“It’s brilliant, my little kids are loving it! It’s really colourful, it brightens up the area and it’s a good place for the kids to play. It was completely empty and a blank space that nobody used, so it’s good that they’ve utilised it for the benefit of the kids.”
Friends of Trentham Park chairperson Brendan Devereux said:
“When I first started getting involved with this park it was somewhere I wanted to bring my kids. I’ve got bad legs and can’t get to Cross Flatts all the time.
“Seeing it today, it looks like a park again, and I’m so proud of everyone who’s been involved. I’m very confident the residents are now proud of the park and will help us keep it this way.”
Hunslet and Riverside councillor Mohammed Iqbal commented:
“This place was originally made for local residents and families, but it was used as a dumping ground. It was unfriendly, it was full of dog poo, nothing for kids.
“All the residents, Touchstone, Groundwork Leeds, Parks and Countryside and the residents’ group worked hard to make this happen and transform the place.
“We hope to do the same for all pocket parks, to make them more friendly and desirable for families to enjoy.”
The next organised activity at Trentham Park will be Den Building, 11am-3pm this Thursday and Friday (22 & 23 August).