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Waterthorpe Park: Friends get go-ahead for conservation project

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A section of the park, with the site of the planned orchard on the left.

Sheffield City Council have approved plans for Waterthorpe Park near Mosborough to be transformed into an educational wildlife park.

The Council is supporting campaign group Friends of Waterthorpe Park (FOWP) by providing benches as well as new apple trees. The support from the Council will allow the group to apply for funding from external bodies.

"I know first-hand what a fantastic place Waterthorpe is to grow up in, with plenty of green spaces to roam around in and explore," Patrick Harrison of FOWP told Now Then.

"It is those experiences I want to share with the next generation of the area's children."

FOWP is now able to plant the first trees for the proposed sustainable orchard in January 2020, and the Council plan to appoint a project manager for the park in the coming months.

This project will be excellent in engaging children and families with the local area and with the benefits of outdoor education

The project was born out of residents' wishes to clean up the park, improve its pathways and encourage wildlife, and they were able to show that these improvements could be funded through the sustainable orchard.

According to FOWP's Wildlife Development Proposal the group aim to increase the biodiversity of the area, develop immersive outdoor classrooms and run STEM activities with local schoolchildren, who will be helping to plant the trees in January.

"This project will be excellent in engaging children and families with the local area and with the benefits of outdoor education," said Helen Stokes, headteacher of Waterthorpe Park Nursery Infant School. Children from Emmanuel school will also help plant trees.

"We hope that it will also support all the work we do around sustaining the planet and the important part that our children can play in looking after the planet for their future."

Jo Kamal

Follow the Friends of Waterthorpe Park on Twitter.

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