A new programme of community fitness activities has been launched after the future of a popular Gaywood playing field was secured.
A plaque commemorating the registration of the River Lane site with the national Fields in Trust programme was unveiled yesterday.
The site was originally included in plans for a major housing development in the Marsh Lane and Lynnsport areas only to be removed in response to local opposition.
Alistair Beales, West Norfolk Council’s cabinet member for corporate projects and assets, said: “When we put our development plans together it soon became clear that local people wanted this area protected for recreational use, and I gave an assurance that we would make that happen.
“This confirms that commitment. A legally binding Deed of Dedication is now registered with the property deeds which means nothing can happen on or with the site without the prior authorisation of Fields in Trust.”
As part of the designation, a £5,000 grant has been secured from the London Marathon Charitable Trust for the delivery of sporting activities at the site.
And Alive Leisure, the body which runs the borough’s sports and leisure facilities, has developed a Come Alive North Lynn family fitness programme, which aims to increase participation.
The programme is particularly intended to support women, young people and residents who currently live an inactive lifestyle to take part.
Representatives of the Lynnsport Ladybirds women’s running club attended the ceremony, which also featured a demonstration of a Buggy Bootcamp fitness programme that is especially aimed at mothers and babies.
Group chairman Peter Lemon said: “Securing this grant has enabled us to put on a range of activities that wouldn’t otherwise be possible.
“Now the site has its designation we will also be able to bid for further funding to broaden the programme even more.
“Research shows that using green spaces in this way really helps to motivate people to adopt a more active lifestyle, so this is excellent news all round and we look forward to working with the local community in developing our future programmes for this space.”
Sarah Ridley, chief grants officer for the London Marathon Charitable Trust, said: “It’s great to see Kings Lynn and West Norfolk join the long list of inspiring projects which will be permanently protected through funding from the trust, enabling local people to enjoy the benefits of physical activity into the future.”