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Emma, nine, persuades council to improve play park
A SCHOOLGIRL from Amesbury went along to a meeting of the town council on Tuesday to ask for a better park she and her friends can play in.
Nine-year-old Emma Butler was invited along to Antrobus House by councillors after she wrote to Wiltshire Council about the lack of play facilities at Raleigh Crescent.
She wrote: “Behind where I live there is a small park. Me and my friends think that it should be much bigger. I know that the government will need to pay for it, but it is worth it, trust me.”
After consulting the other 15 children on the estate, Emma told the council the three small slides, small orange “twisty thing”, bench, two small swings and a miniature seesaw were not sufficient. She said she would like to see some more swings, a zip wire, a “proper” seesaw and a giant basket swing.
“That is my idea of a park for 15 kids,” said Emma, who goes to Amesbury Primary School. She added: “Archer’s Gate is two times the size of us and they are getting two more parks and they already have four. That means they will get six parks.”
Emma’s parents don’t allow her to play in the other parks as they are across a busy road and too far from her home.
Cllr Janet Swindlehurst said: “I agree totally; I checked the play park the other day. When you look at play parks on Archer’s Gate, the children of Raleigh Crescent are not being treated as in the rest of the town. They deserve better.”
The council unanimously agreed to fund improvements to the park and begin consulting with relevant groups. Emma’s mother Sue said: “It’s brilliant, she’s really pleased.”
Mayor of Amesbury Ian Mitchell said: “This is how local democracy is supposed to work.”
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