The children of Bessbrook are to be given an early Christmas present with news of a £90,000 play park investment in the village.
The development of the play park in the Pondfield area of Bessbrook has been confirmed by Newry, Mourne and Down District Council thanks to rural development funding.
Mourne, Gullion and Lecale Rural Development Partnership (MGL) has awarded DAERA grant funding of £70,050 with the council to chip in the rest.
Mourne, Gullion and Lecale Rural Development Partnership Chairperson, Councillor Roisin Mulgrew said: “On behalf of the Local Action Group, I am delighted to be able to provide Newry, Mourne and Down District Council much needed funding of £70,050 to develop the play park in Bessbrook.
“I look forward to seeing the finished play park in the coming months and m confident the completed facility will be enjoyed by the local community and act as a focal point for the village to meet, socialise and improve physical and social well-being.”
The Project was supported by the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) and the European Union, with Newry, Mourne and Down District Council contributing £20,000 towards the upgrade of the play park.
Newry, Mourne and Down District Council Chairperson, Councillor Cathy Mason said: “The council is delighted to launch this project within the rural community of Bessbrook. Inclusive play will be a core element of the design, which will provide fun activities for the local community.”
Cllr Mason continued: “It is rewarding to see this partnership approach between Newry, Mourne and Down District Council, the Rural Development Partnership and DAERA coming to fruition with considerable finance committed to the development of this much needed facility.”
Welcoming the award of the grant funding DAERA Minister Edwin Poots added: “The Leader Programme, through which this project will be funded, enables local people to determine the needs of their own area and decide how to address those needs. This is an excellent example of how the Programme is delivering on the ground.
“Enjoying outdoor spaces is beneficial to health and wellbeing and I am sure this new modern play park, when completed, will be valued and well utilised by parents and children alike in this local rural community.”