A NEW children’s play area has been installed on a popular recreation ground in Burnley.

The £64,000 Multi-Use Games Area is now open at Hargher Clough Recreation Ground, in Venice Street.

The mayor of Burnley, Coun Andy Tatchell, declared the MUGA open during a fun day which included a zip-wire challenge, obstacle course and more activities for youngsters.

Community improvement organisation, Proffitt’s – Investing in Communities, have led the project to transform the previously neglected site into a multi-functional space where people can rest and play.

Martin Proffitt, director of Proffitt’s, said he hoped the new play area would reduce incidents of anti-social behaviour.

He said: “We are delighted that work is now complete. Children and young people of all backgrounds now have a dedicated space where they can exercise, socialise and enjoy the outdoors.

“We hope that the MUGA will encourage local young people to engage in positive activities rather than anti-social behaviour.”

The Lancashire Environmental Fund contributed £30,000 towards the work, while £24,000 came from the Veolia Environmental Trust and £10,000 from Calico.

A seating and youth shelter area has been installed next to the MUGA, and a toddler area created by the adjacent Stoops and Hargher Clough Community Centre.

Paul Taylor, executive director of the Veolia Environmental Trust, said: “This scheme will boost the potential for exercise and enjoyment for the community of Burnley and we are pleased to have supported it.

“I hope that the MUGA and play area are used and enjoyed for many years to come.”

The project was initiated by the Stoops and Hargher Clough Community Association, after the youth group and mums and toddlers group based there commented on the lack of facilities available locally.