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Open day to celebrate park's history

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: May 17, 2014

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THEY will be putting out the welcome mat next weekend at a Swansea park with a little-known past.

There is more to De La Beche Park in Sketty than meets the eye, and there is an open invitation to find out more about it next Saturday.

A family fun day from 11am to 3pm will aim to entertain and inform.

This has been the year when some concerned residents decided to do what they could to safeguard its future.

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Although Sketty Church Bowls Club is as active as ever there, the four tennis courts have been out of action for over a year.

Friends of De La Beche Park was formed on January 29 to try and bring the decaying courts back into play at a cost of £133,000.

And it was while sifting through the park's history that group chairwoman Ann Peregrine-Davies discovered that the park was left as a gift to the community by the Dillwyn Estate as an open space war memorial for those who died in the 1914-18 war.

That immediately increased the importance of the site in their eyes, especially in, this, the centenary of the start of the First World War.

So this year the Friends are determined to erect a memorial stone and try and complete the tennis court fundraising campaign.

"We have got £61,000 so far through donations, fundraising, selling The Forgotten Memorial booklet at Sketty Post Office and a grant," said Ann.

"We have got a sculptor working on a memorial stone design for us and we are hoping to get the stone at an exceedingly reasonable price. We are determined to get it in place by Remembrance Day."

Next Saturday an exhibition on site will help spread the word about the park's history and plans.

"We hope anyone with an affinity with the park will come along," she added.

"There will also be mini-tennis for children, face painting, a bouncy castle, craft stalls and entertainment."

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