This story was published 29 September 2017

They have waited for more than 30 years, but now the dream has become a reality.

From left, Shirley Dale, Damian Neilson, Councillor Annabel Wilkinson, Councillor Brian Phillips of Hambleton District Council, Ruth Swall and Alistair Wilkin in the play area next to the new events field

Danby Wiske finally has an events field – and the community is looking forward to holding events such as strawberry teas, church garden parties, hog roasts and cricket and rounders matches. The field will even provide a small area for ball games.

The community has already raised money to buy a play park, and when the land for the events field became available they worked together to raise the money to buy it, helped by £1,000 from the locality budget of North Yorkshire County Councillor Annabel Wilkinson, who represents the Swale division. Locality budgets allow the 72 county councillors to respond to local needs and requests by recommending funding of up to £5,000 to support projects or activities that benefit the communities they represent.

Cllr Wilkinson said: “Danby Wiske is a strong vibrant community, who have already raised funds to purchase a much-longed-for play park. The villagers have waited more than 30 years for this opportunity and have all worked together to achieve this.

“When I first came to Danby Wiske I was impressed by the wonderful sense of community spirit -everyone working together in support of their beautiful village. The purchase of the field will enable local residents to access the area and hold events and provide a small area for ball games. As the local children attend six different schools the area will also provide a place to meet and socialise.’’

The official opening of the field takes place on Saturday, 14 October at 2pm.

Shirley Dale, of the Danby Wiske Village Hall Committee, said: “Earlier this year, the village hall committee had the opportunity to purchase a piece of land close to the village which was next to the newly-opened play park. As the sale was by sealed bids with a closing date, the committee only had a short time to raise the money.

“Annabel Wilkinson, the newly-appointed county councillor and opener of Danby Wiske play park, was very enthusiastic about the project and recommended funding from the County Council’s Locality Budget, which we were successful in obtaining.

“Also, Adele Wilson-Hope, the Stronger Communities Delivery Manager (Hambleton) has been very supportive in helping us to obtain a grant from the Stronger Communities Programme towards the legal cost of the purchase. Lisa Wilson, the Communities Manager at Hambleton District Council, supported us in obtaining Section 106 funding, which was an enormous help.

“Many parishioners were kind and generous in donating money for which we are extremely grateful. With the grants and donations, the village hall committee was successful in the bid for the field.

“The proposed use for the land is as an extra facility for the newly-opened play park where children can run around and play ball games in a safe environment. It will be wonderful field for events such as rounders and cricket matches, hog roasts, barbecues and as a restful place for people to meet and enjoy the peaceful surroundings. It is also possible to have wildlife areas and to involve children in this project.

“The village hall committee is extremely grateful to all those who have supported this venture which is going to be a valuable asset for the community both for now and in the future.’’