Local people can find out more about exciting plans to restore one of South Tyneside's best loved parks at information days taking place this week.
South Tyneside Council is restoring the historic North Marine Park at South Shields seafront, back to its original Victoria splendour, with support from a £2.4m National Lottery grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). As part of the £3.2m scheme, preliminary works are starting on site early this year, with contractors expected to begin the construction in the summer, undertaking the work in phases so that the park remains open for visitors.
The Information sessions are taking place at Haven Point leisure complex in Pier Parade, on:
- Wednesday 16 January, from 3pm to 7pm;
- Friday 18 January, from 3pm to 7pm.
Residents will get the opportunity to meet Jade Ridley, who was recently appointed as Parks Officer, learn more about the improvements as well as see the latest plans for the restoration work and new children's play area.
Local people will also get the chance to have an input in future community events and activities and find out how they can get involved with the work of Jade and the Friends of North and South Marine parks group.
Councillor Alan Kerr, Deputy Leader of South Tyneside Council with responsibility for Culture and Leisure, said: "The park is an important part of our cultural heritage. It is a beautiful space, much loved by the local community for decades, and is recognised as a real haven of tranquillity. It is also the perfect place to relax, take a walk and enjoy panoramic views of our stunning coastline from the heights of the Lawe Top.
"The restoration will ensure the park's heritage is retained while leaving a legacy for future generations to enjoy."
Key elements of the National Lottery funded project include creating better links with Littlehaven Promenade and improving the area around the Lawe Top, which as the park's highest point, acts as an incredible viewing platform for the coastline, harbour and mouth of the river.
The proposals for the park also include creating a new themed play area, which will reflect the Borough's maritime links and Roman heritage, and restoring the park's original features such as the grotto and the grand promenade staircase. Improvements to the park's open areas, lighting, seating, footpaths and bowling area are also planned.
There are also plans to develop interpretation features and art work installations at the bandstand, grotto and Lawe Top area as well as create an event programme and 'pay to play' activities such as pitch and putt and bowling.
Designs for the new look park are currently subject to the planning process, with the main contractor expected to be appointed over the coming months. The park will remain open as the construction work is phased and is expected to take around 12 months to complete.
For further information about the restoration of North Marine Park visit www.southtyneside.gov.uk/northmarinepark