Charities benefit from Party in the Park donations

More than £2,500 was raised for two local charities through the grand party which celebrated the opening of Galashiels new play park.

The money will be split between the Rowan Boland Memorial Trust and Radio Borders Cash for Kids after 2,000 people attended Party in the Park last Saturday to mark the opening of the Rowan Boland Park.

Council convener David Parker with one of the collection buckets.

Council convener David Parker with one of the collection buckets.

The opening of the £290,000 facility in the Public Park – one of the largest and best equipped in the south of Scotland – was carried out by Scotland rugby coach Gregor Townsend and Commonwealth Games swimmer Beth Johnston, who both hail from Galashiels.

Around £1,000 was raised from donations by those attending Party in the Park, while AM:PM donated £500 and provided a further £500 from takings from their catering outlets which operated on the day.

Play park contractor Hags also donated £500, bringing the total to £2,528.

Party in the Park was organised by Galashiels Community Council and Scottish Borders Council and saw a host of stalls and activities for all ages.

Galashiels Community Council Chair Judith Cleghorn said: “We are delighted so much has been raised for two local charities and thanks those who attended for their generosity.

“The value of the play park has been evident in its first week alone, with hundreds of children enjoying the facility with their families.”

In a joint statement, Galashiels and District Councillors Sandy Aitchison, Andy Anderson, Euan Jardine and Harry Scott added: “Party in the Park was a huge success, and we have to thank all those who attended and donated, sponsors and participants for making it such a great day.

“The Rowan Boland Play Park is one of the best in the south of Scotland and will attract people from far and wide to Galashiels and the Scottish Borders.”

The park was named after Rowan Boland, who tragically died on 19 April 2010 while playing at Gala Cricket Club, aged just nine.

Rowan was an enthusiastic sports person and in honour of his memory his family established the Rowan Boland Memorial Trust which provides help and support for young sports people in the Scottish Borders.

Rowan Boland play park is jointly funded by SBC’s play parks budget, Galashiels Pay and Display car parking fund surpluses and a £10,000 grant from Tesco’s Bags of Help scheme.

Councillors agreed on Thursday, May 31, to invest £3.1million over the next four years in new play parks, skate park and pump tracks, and other outdoor community facilities.