Locals bid to preserve their 'beautiful' Beechwood Park

RESIDENTS have clubbed together to preserve beautiful Beechwood Park, after warnings it could lose funding in years to come.

More than 80 people turned out for a public meeting held at the manor house in the city centre park to talk about how to bring the grounds to their former glory.

Although Beechwood Park, one of two ornamental parks in Newport, is popular with dog walkers, teenagers and families, some warn it could fall into disrepair and that parts of it are due regeneration.

Those at the meeting agreed to set up a group to promote the park and try to secure funding from grant bodies such as Heritage Lottery.

Kevin O'Shea, who lives next to the park on Christchurch Road, led the meeting.

"Unfortunately, it has been neglected for years for various reasons," he said.

"We wanted to find a way we can all work together in a way that will give us a beautiful park to work in, walk in, talk in and just enjoy being with people in.

"We want to maintain the structure of the park, but bring it into the the Twenty-first Century."

Mike McGow, who manages park services with Newport City Council, reassured residents there were no current plans to cut funding more than it had already been reduced.

He said this year parks in Newport lost £100,000. with a number of staff laid off. "We will continue to maintain the park, but if you need to improve that further you need to seek external funding."

Beechwood councillor Paul Hannon listed out some ideas for regeneration, saying people had raised concerns with him about "the disused toilet block, which has been used for drug use and stuff like that.

He added that promotion was needed: "I have heard the paddling pool talked of.

We have tennis courts which are unused at the moment.

"Somewhere in the park where people could let their dogs of the lead and let them have a run around."

John Hallam, who helped lead a regeneration project in nearby Woodland Park, warned the meeting that there were no guarantees public funding would continue in future years: "This could well become derelict as a park in ten years time."

He said the east of Newport in general had done badly from lottery funding, with more projects realised in the west.

But he estimated Beechwood Park could attract its share, with an aim of £30,000 secured in the first year moving up to £100,000 the next and a continued year on-year increase.

Community groups were able to access grant money the council could not, he said.

Beechwood councillor Deb Davies assured residents this was not a plan to transfer responsibility for the park away from the council; "It will be in partnership with the council - as well as.

not instead of."

The new group plans to meet within the next month to discuss plans for the park's future.

Comments (3)

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4:42pm Thu 22 May 14

displayed says...

Its all been done before;

11:30am Tuesday 3rd March 2001
"Five teens arrested after Beechwood Park attack"
"FIVE teenagers were arrested by police in connection with the attack on the 14-year-old girl who was left beaten and bruised in a Newport park last week."

2:20pm Friday 1st April 2011
"RESIDENTS living near a Newport park called for a play area to be moved because of increasing antisocial behaviour."

"Around 50 local residents attended a public meeting at Beechwood House on Tuesday night to discuss the problems at Beechwood Park."
One resident, who did not want to be named, said: “Twilight zone comes along and the whole place transforms the recreational area into a nightmare."
"Some residents said their young children were unable to sleep at night with the noise and swearing from people congregating inside the park late at night and one resident said the park is being used as a urinal."

2:10pm Thursday 28th July 2011
"Anti-social behaviour 'could return to Beechwood park’ - councillor"
“The residents had all sorts of problems with noise.”
“There was a tremendous amount of anti-social behaviour in the park,” he said.......

12:36pm Friday 7th September 2012
"Man charged over Beechwood Park sword incident"

May 2014
"More than 80 people turned out for a public meeting held at the manor house in the city centre park to talk about how to bring the grounds to their former glory."

Well one way would b is to stop chavs gathering there at nite, drinking and causing mayhem!

That aint park life!

Stay outa the park at nite, its a den of iniquity............
.....
Its all been done before; 11:30am Tuesday 3rd March 2001 "Five teens arrested after Beechwood Park attack" "FIVE teenagers were arrested by police in connection with the attack on the 14-year-old girl who was left beaten and bruised in a Newport park last week." 2:20pm Friday 1st April 2011 "RESIDENTS living near a Newport park called for a play area to be moved because of increasing antisocial behaviour." "Around 50 local residents attended a public meeting at Beechwood House on Tuesday night to discuss the problems at Beechwood Park." One resident, who did not want to be named, said: “Twilight zone comes along and the whole place transforms the recreational area into a nightmare." "Some residents said their young children were unable to sleep at night with the noise and swearing from people congregating inside the park late at night and one resident said the park is being used as a urinal." 2:10pm Thursday 28th July 2011 "Anti-social behaviour 'could return to Beechwood park’ - councillor" “The residents had all sorts of problems with noise.” “There was a tremendous amount of anti-social behaviour in the park,” he said....... 12:36pm Friday 7th September 2012 "Man charged over Beechwood Park sword incident" May 2014 "More than 80 people turned out for a public meeting held at the manor house in the city centre park to talk about how to bring the grounds to their former glory." Well one way would b is to stop chavs gathering there at nite, drinking and causing mayhem! That aint park life! Stay outa the park at nite, its a den of iniquity............ ..... displayed
  • Score: 2

10:03pm Fri 23 May 14

Lliswerry Man says...

Can somebody educate me please.

I was born and grew up in Newport, have used all the parks, Belle View, Beechwood and Tredegar Park/House. In the time I have lived here, I have watched all 3 go from beautifully designed planted flowery gardens, and well laid grass, to barren, weedy overgrowths.

So how did they get to be so beautiful years ago, when money was sparce compared to today? Who paid back then for the flowers, trees and features.....play areas, band stands etc?

How is there less money to spend on it today? where has the funding it has always had been allocated been diverted to?

Im so saddened that ANY council , let alone Newport Council, does little to support our FREE outdoor spaces. It smells of some backroom deal to make us use Paid For Services.........

And the Councillors, MP's all wonder why we no longer want to Vote. You take away everything the people enjoy or do little to keep it. NCC has become one Greedy Corporate selling off Machine... are you going to leave anything for our future offspring to enjoy?
Can somebody educate me please. I was born and grew up in Newport, have used all the parks, Belle View, Beechwood and Tredegar Park/House. In the time I have lived here, I have watched all 3 go from beautifully designed planted flowery gardens, and well laid grass, to barren, weedy overgrowths. So how did they get to be so beautiful years ago, when money was sparce compared to today? Who paid back then for the flowers, trees and features.....play areas, band stands etc? How is there less money to spend on it today? where has the funding it has always had been allocated been diverted to? Im so saddened that ANY council , let alone Newport Council, does little to support our FREE outdoor spaces. It smells of some backroom deal to make us use Paid For Services......... And the Councillors, MP's all wonder why we no longer want to Vote. You take away everything the people enjoy or do little to keep it. NCC has become one Greedy Corporate selling off Machine... are you going to leave anything for our future offspring to enjoy? Lliswerry Man
  • Score: -1

10:12pm Fri 23 May 14

displayed says...

It does seem like it, Lliswerry Man.................
.
It does seem like it, Lliswerry Man................. . displayed
  • Score: -2

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