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Warrenpoint Edwardian park set for £850k facelift

By Linda Stewart

An Edwardian park in Warrenpoint is to be restored to its former glory with a £850,000 Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) grant.

The restoration project will safeguard Warrenpoint Municipal Park's at-risk features, including a listed bandstand said to be one of the finest of its kind in Northern Ireland.

The funding will be used to regenerate the public amenity, providing a space for people to relax, reinstating the original plantings, resurfacing paths and upgrading the children's play area and tennis courts.

The story of the beautiful park and its generations of users will also be told in a new interpretative centre that will be housed inside the restored 1930s pavilion building.

The park was designed by Thomas Smith, of Daisy Hill Nursery, in Newry and officially opened in 1906.

Warrenpoint was a leading holiday destination in the late 19th century and the park was established as an attraction for visitors and local people to enjoy.

An exciting events and activities programme will explore and celebrate the attraction's natural, cultural and built heritage through guided walks, talks and volunteer opportunities.

In 2014, the HLF awarded development funding of £82,000 to help progress the plans. Since then Newry, Mourne and Down District Council (NMDDC) and the Warrenpoint Municipal Park Steering Group have worked to create a shared vision for the amenity that will deliver a range of benefits for years to come.

Newry, Mourne and Down District Council will also provide significant funding to ensure the success of the restoration project.

HLF Northern Ireland head Paul Mullan, said: "Key to the success of this has been the relationship between the council and local community, and we are delighted to use National Lottery players' money to return the park to its former glory."

NMDDC chairperson Gillian Fitzpatrick added: "I am delighted that the Warrenpoint Municipal Park heritage lottery regeneration project has received this lottery funding, which will help restore it to its former Edwardian glory."

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