Castleford children helping shape their town's future by having a say on £23.9m transformation

Youngsters in Castleford have had a say on how Wakefield Council’s £23.9m transformation of their town should look.

Friday, 1st October 2021, 1:37 pm
Updated Friday, 1st October 2021, 1:38 pm
A competition before the summer break asked primary school children to come up with imaginative ideas to remake either the Riverside or Henry Moore Square as part of project development for the Towns Fund.

A competition before the summer break asked primary school children to come up with imaginative ideas to remake either the Riverside or Henry Moore Square as part of project development for the Towns Fund.

Prizes were offered for the most creative suggestions for what these places should look like in the future and what activities should happen there.

The council is pleased to be able to announce that the winners are:

Key Stage 1 winner – Dominic, Year 2, St Josephs Catholic Primary School.

Key Stage 1 Runner-up – Bethany, Year 2, St Josephs Catholic Primary School.

Key Stage 2 Winner – Amelia, Year 4, St Josephs Catholic Primary School.

Key Stage 2 Runner-up – Daniel, Year 5, St Josephs Catholic Primary School.

There were also special commendations for Annabelle, Year 2, St Josephs Catholic Primary School and Amelia, Year 3, Smawthorne Henry Moore School.

Judging for the competition was undertaken by the Leader of the Council, Coun Denise Jeffery and Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Economic Growth and Property, Coun Darren Byford.

Coun Byford presented the prizes, donated by the Castleford Tigers Foundation and Castleford Heritage Trust, at a special event held in Castleford Library earlier this week.

Coun Denise Jeffery, Leader of Wakefield Council, said: “The council is keen to ensure that all parts of the community have a say in the future of the places they live, work, learn and visit.

“That includes making sure children are very much a part of the process – they certainly didn’t disappoint!

“There were some very colourful and creative entries that Darren and I enjoyed looking at.

“Picking the winners was hard, and we want to congratulate everyone who took part in their excellent work.”

Coun Darren Byford, Wakefield Council’s Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Economic Growth and Property, said the Council takes feedback on its plans seriously: “We held a consultation in May and June of this year to gather views on our long-term strategy for Castleford town centre.

“A series of virtual and face-to-face events were held, with a questionnaire available to help residents provide feedback.

“As part of the process, bespoke sessions were run for businesses, politicians and for children alongside our work with the general public.

“The strategy is almost complete, but the real work to bring it to life starts now.

“As well as more public consultation on our projects, we will also be reaching back out to schools in the coming months to continue their involvement in the future of Castleford and to see if we can make some of these brilliant ideas a reality.”

Coun Jeffery added: “This regeneration work is about the long-term future of Castleford.

“As our children will be at the heart of the town in the years to come, it’s vital that we ensure it’s a place where they want to stay to live, work and socialise.

“This means the views of young people are very important if we’re to get that right.”

The competition is part of the wider ‘Re-imagining Castleford’ regeneration programme – which aims to improve the perception and appeal of the town centre and to shape the future Castleford as a good place to live, work, visit and spend leisure time.