The Lottery fund has picked up some of the slack, and local councils have had to dip into their pockets to get many of these facilities back into shape, but the sense of community is lost - possibly forever. However, something amazing has sprung up around some of the projects that exist - "Friends of..... "
Elsecar park had become a victim of the decline. When I was little, Elsecar Park was beautiful and a great day out. I have some wonderful memories of the park (apart from the time when I fell in the paddling pool fully clothed and my mum made me strip off all my wet clothing and wear my dads jumper instead. I was 13 years old and the park was full of other teenagers from my school who knew me!).
A few years ago, the park had become a "no go" area - full of yobs and druggies and not a nice place to be. However the local council, assisted greatly by "The Friends of Elsecar Park" have completely turned this back around, and once again the park is a lovely and safe place for families and kids to be. The "Friends" organise fund raising events, nature events, music in the newly restored bandstand - for both old and young alike, built great new play area's and much more. The "Friends" consist of - like most groups of this type - busy people, mums, single, females, males, young, old from all walks of life who have a desire to halt the decline and improve the area in which they live. Thank goodness for the "Friends" - perhaps we should do away with politicians and get a group of "Friends" running the country instead. I'd vote for them.
They have reopened the cafe - and were doing a roaring trade on Saturday when the young man and I decided we needed to get some exercise, so we took advantage of the 9 hole pitch and put.