Former Preston bowls green set to become community space

Coun Robert Boswell, with Councillor Mark Yates and Phil Crowe, and Ranger Steve Smith on the former bowling green, which is to be transformed into community garden at Ashton Park
Coun Robert Boswell, with Councillor Mark Yates and Phil Crowe, and Ranger Steve Smith on the former bowling green, which is to be transformed into community garden at Ashton Park
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A former bowling green in a Preston park is set to be transformed into a community garden.

Funding of more than £40,000 is to be spent revamping a green on Ashton Park, which was closed this year because of budget cuts.

Council bosses have worked alongside Preston Environmental Forum on the project, which leaders say will be a “wonderful community asset”.

One of the two greens at Ashton Park was closed earlier this year as a result of a reduced parks budget, but plans have been drawn up for a garden to stop the space from becoming unused.

A project was developed for Preston Environmental forum to be based in the bowls pavilion, and to create a community garden.

Coun mark Yates, who represents Larches ward, said: “There are still bowling greens around Preston but I think bowling, to some extent, has diminished.

“Obviously it’s making use of that bowling green, and turning it into a community garden will be a wonderful community asset.

“If you look around, bowling greens are closing, unfortunately.

“I think there is still a need for them, but I don’t think it’s as popular as it used to be.

“And the maintenance cost of bowling greens is astronomical, it’s not just a matter of cutting the grass.

“My understanding is it wasn’t being used very much either.”

A report to Preston Council’s cabinet recommends that leaders approve the project and accept the grant funding.

The budget of the project is £41,260, to be financed through grants, with £4,000 still to be found.

The scheme will be smaller if the extra cash is not secured.