Country park group threatened with closure now 'inundated' with offers

A park working group threatened with closure has been 'inundated' with offers of help after announcing it may be forced to fold.

Wednesday, 30th June 2021, 3:18 pm

The Friends of Newmillerdam Country Park - a group of volunteers which focuses on maintaining and improving the site - recently posted on Facebook that they may have to close down due to dwindling interest.

They wrote: "Although there is strong opposition to the group closing down, no one has so far expressed any willingness to undertake the roles that are essential for the group’s survival in its current form."

But the move has now triggered a huge surge of interest.

The picturesque park is a popular destination.

Annette Hayward, community development and engagement officer at Wakefield Council, said: "Within hours of the post being placed on social media, I was inundated with offers of help and support and interest from people wishing to fill any posts which may be vacated at the upcoming Annual General Meeting (AGM).

"I would like to take this opportunity to thank all those people who have expressed an interest in wishing to carry on the continued hard work in helping to run the Friends of Newmillerdam group.”

Coun Jack Hemingway, cabinet member for climate change and environment, said it would be a "very sad loss" to lose the group, and hoped it would continue.

He said: “Newmillerdam has benefitted enormously from having one of the most active Friends Groups operating within the district for well over a decade.

The Friends carry out vital maintenance at the park.

“Supported by the council they have done a great deal to improve and enhance the park on their work days, as well as carry out essential maintenance work and an enormous amount of litter picking.

"Their work has included supporting the Gnome Walk, Lawns Dike Footpath, assisting with the rhododendron removal and burning and footpath repairs.

“As well as this, the Friends have provided a welcoming public face for the park, have arranged activities for the public to enjoy and also produced leaflets detailing the history of the park and others showing walks and points of interest.

The group's AGM will be held on Tuesday, July 20 at The scout hut, Barnsley Road, Newmillerdam at 6.45pm.

Roles expected to become vacant include chairman and vice chairman, secretary/assistant, social media coordinator, website designer/creator

All persons wishing to vote or be nominated must do so in person as no proxy votes will be considered at this time.