Work can begin on a £4 million project to transform Boultham Park in Lincoln into a reinvented open space with an education centre, cafe and horticulture centre.
The 50-acre park restoration project was proposed by partners learning disability charity Linkage, and City of Lincoln Council.
The building programme will begin in a few weeks time after the Heritage Lottery Fund and Big Lottery Fund agreed changes project.
The Boultham Park Restoration Project will involve converting the former stable block into an education centre as well as building a café, horticulture centre and restoring park features.
The work will also introduce some lighting and will feature improved pathways, CCTV, signage and seating.
The Heritage Lottery Fund and Big Lottery Fund ‘Parks for People’ initiative have confirmed their £2.7 million grant for the latest proposals.
As reported previously, plans had to be revised following the original submission, when cost estimates for the de-silting of the lake rose dramatically.
Work is progressing on the lake and the council is now working with local residents and park users on finding alternative funding.
Linkage Chief Executive Valerie Waby said: “This confirmation by the National Lottery is an important confidence boost for our plans for Lincoln, coming in our 40th anniversary year.
“We have long wanted to start providing further education services for students with learning disabilities in the city and Boultham Park will be a very attractive base.”
Caroline Bird, Community Services Manager at City of Lincoln Council, added:
“At last the restoration of Boultham Park can go ahead.
“We plan to have contractors on site in August and big changes will soon be evident. This will be great news to park users and the community, and we thank them for their patience and support.”
Jonathan Platt, Head of HLF East Midlands, said: “Boultham Park is a special place and our trustees felt that this ambitious project has the potential to bring great benefits for everyone who enjoys spending time there. It’s taken a lot of hard work to get to this stage and we look forward to seeing the difference the funding makes to the site in the coming months.”
Community involvement in Boultham Park has soared since the original grant announcement was made back in 2013, with local organisations helping to improve the landscape by building a Centenary Garden to mark the anniversary of the start of World War One, plus litter-picking, special events and the introduction of a toddlers’ activity session.
A £250,000 appeal to match-fund the lottery grant now stands at more than £100,000.
Led by volunteer and retired Lincoln businessman, Philip Barnatt, the total will be boosted by a new golf day at Blankney on Friday, July 1 and some of the proceeds of the Lincoln Flume waterslide down Steep Hill, organised by the Rotary Club of Lincoln Colonia, on Sunday, July 17.