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Consultants appointed for rec facelift

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Thursday 29 June

Preparing for final bid to transform precious local asset

The restoration and enhancement of Faversham Recreation Ground is a step closer after councillors approved a design and project management contract.

Last year, Swale Borough Council successfully bid for stage 1 funding from The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) Parks for People programme for £117,800 to carry out design and development work for the scheme.

Earlier this month, the council’s cabinet approved the consultants who will develop the initial masterplans looking at detailed designs, specifications, costings and plans needed to support a further bid for stage 2 funding of £1.6 million to carry out the works needed.

A critical part of this will involve consultation events with organised groups and the general public to balance the demand on the funding to capture both heritage and new facilities.

The HLF and the Big Lottery Fund have provisionally approved this bid, so if confirmed as expected the consultants will project manage the delivery of the scheme.

Cllr David Simmons, cabinet member for environment and rural affairs at the council, said:

"We’re making good progress towards transforming the recreation ground into a real destination for people to visit with all the family.

"It’s a wonderful asset that has been enjoyed for more than 150 years, and we want to build on the strength of its unique heritage, and create a park that will be enjoyed for generations to come.

"By appointing consultants to develop and deliver the scheme, we can ensure the final bid for the money to deliver the scheme will be of the highest quality, and if approved, we can get on with delivering the scheme as soon as practical."

The project will see a wide range of improvements to the 20 acre park that will restore many of its historic features.

These are set out in a master plan for the site, and include:

The report on the appointment of consultants is available on the cabinet agenda page.

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