Jennings praised young members of the Good Samaritans who have worked hard to help fund the new £25,000 pirate ship playground for their early years pupils. The footballer thought the children’s super new facility scored highly and praised the children for achieving their goal.
"I'm delighted to be at the opening of Our Lady and St Edward’s new playground,” he said. "It's a fantastic facility which I'm sure will really benefit the children who use it. Everyone involved in the fundraising activities should be very proud of themselves because they've played a big role in making this happen and I'm sure the children will really appreciate it."
Spread over a large area laid partly with tarmac and partly with grass, the playground features a pirate ship, balance beams, stepping logs, climbing towers, trim trails, picnic benches and a sandbox.
Creative Play’s Jim Gambino, who oversaw the project, said: “We met with the school back in June with a view to developing an early years play area and talked through some ideas about what kind of play features they wanted. What we came up with was a climbing structure with a pirate ship feature to encourage imaginative role play and exploration. Once the designs were in place, the installation of the equipment took 14 days. It was great because we started with a blank canvas.
“The wide range of play features encourages development, creativity, imagination, exploration and role play as well as physical movement skills. To us, every child matters and every child is different so we promote inclusion and make sure no child is left out.”
The playground is part of a new early years base for pre-school and reception pupils aged three to five, and deputy head teacher, Sarah Parry asserted that the playground is the “jewel in its crown”.
She said: “Because our school has grown so much, we purchased an old building over the road that had lain empty for two years. The diocese helped towards the cost, but we raised the rest ourselves with the help of our Good Samaritans Team, so it’s great that the children in the team have something tangible to show for their fundraising efforts.
“What we have now is a fantastic play area for the children to enjoy, plus it’s the first time we’ve ever had grass. It was so important for us to provide an amazing play area to enhance the learning experience for our pupils. We are all blown away by how fantastic it is.
Ten-year-old Alice Hanna, a founding member of the Good Samaritans Team, whose mission is to help people at home, school and in the wider community, said: “We did a sponsored walk and all the money we raised went towards the new playground.
“The little children really like it and have lots of fun so it’s nice to know that we helped that happen.”
Visit www.creativeplayuk.com or contact [email protected] / 01244 375 627 for more information.