Burnley church gets cash help to transform ‘eyesore’ land

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WASTELAND branded an eyesore by neighbours of a church development is being transformed into a community space.

The £24,867 improvement project will come as a relief to residents of Sycamore Avenue, who complained earlier in the year that the building of a new community centre next to the Life Church had come to a halt.

But improvements have now been funded with a grant of £23,592 from The Veolia Environmental Trust, through the Landfill Communities Fund, with additional funding from the Life Church.

The project was designed following consultation with residents, Life Church members and Burnley Borough Council, to create a functional green space the whole community can use.

Senior pastor at the Life Church Jeff Brunton said: “We are grateful to The Veolia Environmental Trust for the grant which has enabled us to restore this vital area.

“We look forward to seeing local people enjoying the space next year, as well as organising outdoor events ourselves where we can invite the community.”

The restoration work began on site in September and was carried out by local company Landscape Engineering Ltd. Workers cleared nettles and brambles, levelled the large mounds of debris and landscaped the area.

The ground has been seeded with grass to create a flat area big enough for two junior football pitches. The perimeter areas have been designated for meadow flowers. A footpath has also been installed around the site.

It is anticipated it will be open for the public in the spring, when the meadow areas have established and the grass has taken root.

Margaret Cobbold, executive director of The Veolia Environmental Trust, said: “It is great to have been able to support this community project through the Landfill Communities Fund. I look forward to seeing the green space open for the whole community to access and enjoy.”