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£250,000 playpark improvement work revealed

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£250,000 playpark improvement work revealed

Sixteen Renfrewshire playparks are set to share in a cash bonanza of a quarter of a million pounds.

A programme of improvements – including resurfacing and the introduction of new play and sports equipment – will be carried out at various sites around the area.

The £250,000 investment was agreed by councillors earlier this year, and priority sites were identified according to need.

Details of the planned work have now been agreed, with seven sites chosen for major renovation work.

Renfrewshire_Council_ezg_1They are: Thomas Shanks Park, Johnstone; Barwood Park, Erskine; Robertson Car Park, Paisley; Kintyre Park, Linwood; Inchinnan Playing Field; Craigburn Avenue, Houston; and Howwood Park.

The work set to be carried out includes new surfaces, the removal of old equipment, and installation of new facilities ranging from swings and roundabouts to outdoor fitness equipment.

An extra site, at Urquhart Crescent, Renfrew, will receive a new multi-activity unit and surface if funding allows.

Eight other sites have also been earmarked for minor improvement and maintenance work: Crags Road, East End Park, Glencoats Park, Maxwellton Park and Skye Crescent, all Paisley; Anne Avenue and Campbell Street, both Renfrew; and Ellerslie Street, Johnstone.

Councillor Jim Harte, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Environment and Infrastructure Policy Board, said: “Play areas offer our young people the chance to develop active lifestyles at an early age.

“Currently, the council owns or maintains 94 play areas throughout Renfrewshire, offering a diverse range of equipment, for young and older children.

“While many of these facilities have an excellent choice of equipment in good condition, there are some which require substantial investment, which is why we have identified these as priority areas.

“Through the Local Area Committees, the council will continue to support communities to develop and upgrade their local play areas.”

The work is due to start early in the new year and is planned to be completed by the end of March.

For more information please visit www.renfrewshire.gov.uk

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£700,000 Investment In School Computers

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Renfrewshire Council is to spend £700,000 on improving computer technology and internet access in the area’s schools.

The new investment will see the replacement of older computers, as well as improved access to wireless internet.

The cash – to be spent in the next 12 months – will also allow the council to invest in new methods of internet-based learning and teaching in the area’s schools.

Councillor Lorraine Cameron, Convener of the Education Policy Board, said: “We are delighted to be able to spend such a significant sum of money on what we believe is a crucial area for our children’s futures.

“We now live in a digital age and it is important to keep our technology up to date if we are to equip our children with the skills they will need in the years ahead.

“In particular, the internet is now playing an increasingly important role in schools, and the investment in wifi access will put Renfrewshire’s pupils and teachers a mouse-click away from the world of learning that exists online.”

Councillor Cameron visited St James’s Primary School in Paisley to meet some of the pupils and teachers who will benefit from the investment.

Lorna Murray, the school’s acting head teacher, said: “This will really increase the opportunities available to our pupils as it will give them better access to computers than they have just now.

“Computers are becoming more important as a tool for learning all the time. It will be great to have some new laptops for the pupils and teachers.”

Money will be targeted at the replacement of older computers in Renfrewshire’s schools. This will help the council bring down its maintenance costs, as these bills increase with the age of the hardware.

The investment will also allow the council to enhance its provision of innovative internet-based teaching and learning methods.

The council is forming a working group – featuring head teachers and pupils as well as council IT staff – to work out where best to spend the money, with detailed proposals to be produced later this year.

The money was made available as part of an additional £1million investment across education and leisure services, announced as part of the council’s budget in January.

The remaining £300,000 is to be spent on extending free wifi internet coverage in Renfrewshire’s town halls, libraries, museums and schools. This investment was agreed by the Community and Family Care Policy Board in February.