In a bid to improve children’s play areas and promote active lifestyles, the completion of a £1.35 million investment has seen the opening of new sports pitches across five parks. Haw Hill Park in Normanton took centre stage as Councillor Michelle Collins unveiled brand new tennis courts, solidifying its position as a recreational hub for local residents.

The recent enhancements at Thornes Park, Pontefract Park, Queens Park in Castleford, and Vale Head Park in Hemsworth have been met with great enthusiasm. Designed to foster inclusivity, these newly opened play areas are inviting children of all abilities to engage in play and exploration alongside their peers.

At Haw Hill Park, an exciting event unfolded as children from Normanton Junior School and Normanton All Saints were treated to free tennis activities organised by the Wakefield School of Tennis. The opening event drew strong support from community stakeholders, including the Friends of the Park and the Well Project charity.

Expressing her delight, Councillor Michelle Collins, the Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure, and Sport, shared, “It was fantastic to see how much fun the children had on the new courts and facilities at Haw Hill Park. They are great additions and will be enjoyed by the local community for many years to come.”

These park improvements align with the Council’s commitment to investing £1.8 million in enhancing parks until 2024. Prioritising the development of parks, play areas, and green spaces has been a cornerstone of their agenda, aimed at creating high-quality recreational spaces accessible to all residents.

Councillor Jack Hemingway, the Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Environment, expressed his satisfaction with the transformations, stating, “I’m so pleased that we’ve made such a difference to the play areas in our parks. We’ve had great feedback that children and young people are enjoying exploring the equipment and facilities. Parks are free and accessible places for people to socialise, exercise, and improve our local environment. Our ambition is to have a high-quality park or green space in every community across the Wakefield district.”

With the completion of this remarkable investment, the local community can look forward to many joyful years of recreation, fostering a sense of togetherness and promoting a healthy and active lifestyle for children across Wakefield.