Statue in honour of mining history of Gedling Country Park to be built thanks to £18k funding

Posted On : 13 April 2017 @ 11:23

A group of volunteers have been awarded £18,000 to create a permanent memorial for miners who died on a former colliery site in Gedling.

The Friends of Gedling Country Park have won £18,425 in funding from Nottinghamshire County Council’s Supporting Local Communities Fund to commission an artist to create a permanent piece of art in the new memorial garden at Gedling Country Park.

The group applied for money from the County Council’s Supporting Local Communities Fund, which provides over £500,000 per year in funding awards to support projects that are beneficial to the local community.  

With the support of Gedling Borough Council, who manage and maintain the park, an artist will be commissioned by the Friends group to work with local children and community groups to create the centrepiece for the memorial garden. It will commemorate the miners who worked and died on the site and provide a focal point for anyone wishing to spend a few minutes in quiet reflection.

Gedling Colliery was the life-blood of the village and its surrounding areas until it closed in 1991. The site stood derelict for over 20 years before being transformed into a country park in March 2015.

The Friends and Gedling Borough Council have been developing the memorial garden within the country park for a number of months and have already installed several large metal ‘rings’ to mark the entrance – these were salvaged from the former colliery, where they were used underground to maintain the stability of the tunnels.

The park was awarded Green Flag status in 2016 and a unique mining-themed large children’s adventure play area opened later in the same year. A new visitor centre is also near completion making Gedling Country Park one of the top destinations in the county to visit.

Councillor Peter Barnes, Portfolio Holder for Environment said:

“This is superb news and huge congratulations must go to the Friends Group who are great ambassadors for the country park and have done very well to get this funding. When we turned the former colliery into this brilliant country park, we always said that the heritage of the site would not be forgotten and these plans for a memorial to remember the miners will go a long way to ensuring that the site’s history is never forgotten.”   

Terry Lock, Chairman of the Friends of Gedling Country Park said:

“Our sincere gratitude goes to the councillors and members of the public who have helped us in not only achieving this funding but who have donated their time and money to design and develop this memorial garden. We will be working closely with both Gedling Borough and the County Council to ensure that we create a fitting memorial to commemorate all those who gave their lives during the lifetime of the colliery.”

Kevin Sharman, Nottinghamshire County Council’s Transport, Planning and Programme Development team manager said:

“We are delighted to support this project which has had a lot of local support and will be a fitting tribute to the miners who lost their lives while the pit was open. The memorial will be a welcome addition to the country park and highlights the variety of projects that communities are benefitting from as part of the Supporting Local Communities scheme.”

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