Victoria park enjoying new lease of life as £4m restoration gathers pace

St Helens Star: Restoration: Vikki Watkinson-Roberts holds a picture of the Gate Lodge from days gone by as she stands before the revamped buildin Restoration: Vikki Watkinson-Roberts holds a picture of the Gate Lodge from days gone by as she stands before the revamped buildin

AFTER campaigning so hard to see its restoration, The Friends of Victoria Park are making the most of the venue’s new facilities by hosting a series of community events over the summer.

Work on the £4 million refurbishment started in February 2013 after support was secured from the Heritage Lottery fund.

Now the Friends, which formed in 2005, are enjoying seeing the improvements bear fruit.

Many of the park’s features have been given a new lease of life, including the Gate Lodge, tennis courts, landscape features, the pond and 1913-style Orangery.

And thanks to an extra grant of £10,000 from the Awards for All board, the Friends are planning a series of events through May, June and July designed to make the most of the new facilities.

These include subsidised tennis sessions for both adults and children, which are now available on the revamped courts, taking place at the park on Wednesdays.

St Helens Star: Budding tennis aces: Hollie Carr, John Carr, Amelie Roberts and Matthew Carter have been learning raquet skills on the park’s courts

  • Budding tennis aces: Hollie Carr, John Carr, Amelie Roberts and Matthew Carter have been learning raquet skills on the park’s courts

 

Meanwhile, The Gate Lodge, near Rutland Street, will host regular Tai Chi sessions, storytelling training and Monday night yoga will also be on offer at the park.

Sing-Along-a-Language sessions to help develop language skills by teaching Spanish to young children will be available later in the year.

One of the highlight events will be a Big Busk free music festival, which will take place at the park on the afternoon of Saturday, July 19.

“It will be a great way to show how the new amenities are being used, and how people in the community are benefiting,” said Vikki Watkinson-Roberts of the Friends of Victoria Park.

“These activities provide affordable alternative access to health and fitness programmes, and learning new skills to those living within the community, as well as encouraging people to visit and get involved with the park.”

St Helens Star: Matthew and Amelia try a hand at doubles

  • Matthew and Amelia try a hand at doubles

 

Further information on the events can be found on friendsofvictoriapark.org and, to book a place, contact Vikki on 07936 586591 or email fovp_activities@outlook.com.

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