North East Connected

Fun Day is a Knockout

In the last decade over 500 homes on Cleadon Park in South Shields, have been knocked down to make way for 750 new properties as part of a £90million regeneration scheme.

But on Wednesday (August 10), local residents were bowled over by demolition of a different kind – the “human demolition zone”.

This brightly coloured inflatable obstacle course, complete with oversized “wrecking ball” was just one of the attractions at the Cleadon Park Fun Day – and it proved a massive hit.

More than 400 residents turned out for the annual event, which has been running for over 10 years, demonstrating the commitment to the regeneration of this part of South Shields by partners Isos Housing, South Tyneside Council, Bellway Homes, South Tyneside Homes and Ridgeway Children’s Centre.

Funded by North-East, not-for-profit housing provider Isos, together with a £1,000 council grant, the fun day featured fairground rides, an Army assault course provided by the local Territorial Army unit,  Zoo Academy and its menagerie of guinea pigs, reptiles and insects and a touch of magic from magician Wizadora.

Visitors to the event at Ridgeway Primary School also got the chance to meet officers from the Northumbria Police force and representatives of South Tyneside Council’s community area forum.

Local charity Bright Futures, which works to improve the lives of young women in some of the most deprived parts of South Shields, was also on hand.

Younger children were entertained with face painting and arts and crafts organised by the Ridegeway Children’s Centre, and a fund-raising chocolate tombola, together with a donation from a local ice cream vendor, raised £100 for charity on the day.

This money will be split between the three good causes supported by South Tyneside mayor Coun. Alan Smith – Young Carers in South Tyneside and the local branches of Diabetes UK and the Citizens Advice Bureau.

In thanking fellow organisers – South Tyneside Council housing strategy assistant, Andrea Wood and Ridgeway Children’s Centre manager, Karen Pippett – Isos localism officer, Lewis Rimington, said the event had been a huge success.

He added: “The fun day was a fantastic event that was thoroughly enjoyed by everyone and an example of partnership working at its very best.

“Everyone involved in the day was so supportive; it all came together brilliantly and to achieve that you genuinely need people working together.”

Cleadon Park was the first council housing estate to be built in South Tyneside in the 1920s.

When it fell into disrepair, the decision was made to undertake a £90m regeneration project, providing quality new homes available to rent or buy, plus community facilities including a Primary Care Centre, library and community rooms.

It is anticipated the scheme will be completed by early 2017.

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