The latest phase of work in the ongoing improvement of Ilkley’s Riverside Gardens is complete, after a new line of trees were planted alongside the newly created playground, which were donated by local people and businesses, including leading estate agent, Dacre, Son & Hartley.
The latest project came after The Friends of Ilkley Riverside Parks (FOIRP), which is the local charity set up to maintain and improve the park areas beside the River Wharfe, completed work on three magnificent new stone-built raised flower beds during November.
As well as planting the new flower beds, the team of 15 regular members of FOIRP, who are supported by an army of approximately 30 more volunteers, have also been busy in recent weeks planting Red Campion plug plants in the park’s wildflower area and planting up the embankment area at the Eastern end of the park. This follows their stunning creation of new flowerbeds around the park’s war memorial.
All this work in 2022 follows on from a series of improvements to the park’s pathways, fencing, benches, signage and ramps in previous years, in addition to regular maintenance jobs in the parks.
Patrick McCutcheon, head of residential at Dacre, Son & Hartley, which is headquartered in Ilkley, said: “In recent years, FOIRP have made an incredible difference to the three park areas beside the River Wharfe. They’ve also transformed the flagpole and Second World War memorial area and played an important role in creating the fantastic new children’s playground that opened this summer.
“As an Ilkley resident and a parent of children growing up in town, my family has spent many hours enjoying the parks and the riverside area, and it’s terrific to see these ongoing improvements, thanks to the hard work of everyone associated with FOIRP.
“The new flower beds that they’ve recently built and planted look very smart and when they needed a local business to fund new trees to go alongside the new playground, we were very pleased to lend our support. We’re an Ilkley based business, so both local community and environmental issues are very important to us and we’re already looking forward to exploring how we can continue to support the group’s future plans for the parks.”
Ed Duguid, chairman at FOIRP, said: “2022 has been a big year for us and we’ve achieved a great deal. After raising and investing more than £50,000 in the new playground, alongside the £150,000 that Bradford Council contributed, to create one of the best facilities of its kind in the area, we’ve now completed work on the new raised flower beds and significantly improved the embankment area at the eastern end of Riverside Gardens, which offers a great welcome for visitors to the park.
“Planting these new trees marked the end of this phase of work as we head into winter, and we’re very pleased to have done it with the support of numerous local people and businesses including Dacre, Son & Hartley.
“We’re already planning for next spring, when we will start work improving the other side of the embankment area and look forward to other new projects, which promise to be very exciting.”
Anyone wanting further information about FOIRP’s work, and to find out how to support the group, can visit www.friends-of-ilkley-riverside-parks.com or the group’s Facebook page.