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Event to mark centenary park improvements

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People can enjoy all the fun of the fair at Stevens Park centenary event on Wednesday 27 October from 11am.

The Quarry Bank park will host a Victorian Fair with rides for £1, stalls and a juggling show from Solo Circus act.

The event will showcase impressive new facilities following a £1.8 million regeneration programme at the park.

Recent works have been made possible after Dudley Council, the Friends of Stevens Park and The Emily Jordan Foundation Projects successfully applied for £1.4million of Parks for People (Lottery Heritage Fund and National Lottery Community Fund) funding.

There has been a restoration and extension at Tintern House, formerly known as the White House, where Dudley Council is working in Partnership with The Emily Jordan Foundation Projects.

The charity supports people with learning disabilities, is basing itself in the building and is actively seeking trainees for its projects. Opportunities including horticultural training opportunities and a bike recycling workshop, are available to support people with learning disabilities to move closer towards work.

As part of the event, The Mayor of Dudley will cut a ribbon on the building, which will also house a café, toilets and hireable meeting rooms, at 1.30pm.

In the park, drives have been resurfaced and new footpaths constructed to enhance the visitor experience. The main entrance gates have been restored and essential repair works have been carried out to the bandstand, where the original colour scheme is being investigated prior to planned redecoration.

In the Peace Gardens, the memorial statue has been repaired and the plaques and walls have been cleaned. A new ramped access path is also nearing completion.

Councillor Karen Shakespeare, cabinet member for public realm, said:

We are incredibly proud of what’s been achieved at Stevens park and I would like to thank the Friends group and The Emily Jordan Foundation Projects for their dedication to making this project such a success.
I look forward to celebrating the centenary event later this month, where people will have a chance to see the fantastic work that’s gone into preserving the park and opening Tintern House for the next generation.”

Chris Jordan, Founder of The Emily Jordan Foundation, said:

Since the Foundation was established in Kidderminster in 2008 we have supported many people with learning disabilities to learn new skills, to enable ‘those that can’ to enter the workplace. We are now really looking forward to being able to do the same thing in the Black Country - this makes a huge difference to this very disadvantaged group in our society.
We have received fantastic support from Dudley Council, the Friends and the Lottery, and we are looking forward to many years of working together with this great partnership that has been developed.

David Sparks, chair of Friends of Stevens Park, said:

The Park has been transformed. First established in the 1920s, it has now had a 100 year make over. Here's to 3021 and another century at the heart of the community.

The Friends of Stevens Park Quarry Bank is made up of volunteers in the local community. People can find out more on how to get involved at www.facebook.com/parkquarrybank/

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