Project to bring new life into Sunnyvale

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A leisure attraction that used to have thousands of visitors will be brought back to life thanks to an ambitious project.

Sunnyvale Pleasure Garden, just off Badger Lane, Hipperholme, had become overgrown since closing in 1949 but in its heyday attracted 100,000 people a year to enjoy attractions such as a boating lake, helter skelter, cafe, mini-steam train and donkey rides.

Now PC Chris Madden, Ward Officer for Rastrick has generated support to renovate the site into an intervention project for the district’s young people.

Thanks to funding from Newground Together and the Police and Crime Commissioner for West Yorkshire Police, the project is off to a flying start, aiming to help youngsters in the area keep away from crime anddevote time something more meaningful.

Over the past year, PC Madden and his team of volunteers have cleared a large patch of the site to make it usable, and will shortly clean the large lake to make it available to teach project attendees to fish and enjoy an outdoor lifestyle.

PC Madden said: “We have really hit the ground running and made some great inroads to the site this year, it has been a challenge but we’re getting there. We aim to have a class running by the end of this year.

“This will be a significant benefit to the whole district and we aim to get as many youngsters through the doors as possible.

“We aim to work with kids from all backgrounds and provide them with a structured activity followed by a crime awareness talk on-site. We have many crime topics to cover and each intake will have around 10 weeks with us.”

Peter Jordan, Newground Together’s Executive Director, said: “This is a fantastic project and we’re delighted to be able to approve it. The sheer size of the site is impressive and the possibilities the project has are huge and we’re looking forward to seeing the site continuing to develop.”