New Royal title for Caw playing field

THE playing fields at Nelson Drive are to get a new, Royal title under the umbrella of Fields in Trust, formerly the National Playing Fields Association.

Kilfennan Valley Park was nominated for protection as a Queen Elizabeth II Field by the City Council to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee last year in 2012.

It means the fields will be held in trust and will become a living legacy to the local community by being permanently protected as a green space. This will ensure that communities have the opportunity to adopt healthy, active lives for generations to come.

To celebrate the area being granted Fields in Trust status the members of Caw/Nelson Drive Action Group, in partnership with the City Council, will host an event in conjunction with Caw Football Club on Saturday, February 9, at 1 pm, prior to the Caw FC home match, to formally launch the Queen Elizabeth II Field.

Among those who will be attending will be William Hay MLA, Danny McCartney and Alice McCartney on behalf of the City Council, Drew Thompson, chairperson of Caw/Nelson Drive Action Group and Linda Watson, the Action Group’s co-ordinator.

Also on the guest list are Mark McHale, manager of Caw Football Club, Richard Watson, chairman of Caw Football Club, and all the residents of the Caw/Nelson Drive area

Delighted to announce the new status, Ms Watson said: “I am delighted that Derry City Council has agreed to the Kilfennan Valley Park becoming a Queen Elizabeth II Field.

“The Diamond Jubilee and the 2012 Olympics were once-in-a-lifetime events and what better way of celebrating their success than by local people being given the opportunity to join in sports and other outdoor activities on their permanently protected Queen Elizabeth II Field.”

Fields in Trust was originally founded back in 1925 as the National Playing Fields Association by King George V, with the mission to ensure that everyone, young or old, able or disabled, wherever they live, having access to free, local outdoor space for sport, play and recreation.

These spaces are vital to building happy and healthy communities and sadly continue to be threatened by all kinds of development, according to the national charity and operate throughout the UK to safeguard recreational spaces and campaign for better statutory protection for all kinds of outdoor sites.

Over 1,280 spaces across the UK enjoy protected status under the organisation and the Queen Elizabeth II Fields Challenge is they charity’s current flagship UK-wide programme to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee and London Olympic and Paralympic Games, as well as the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

The Patron is The Duke of Cambridge.