PLANS to improve green spaces, sports facilities and play parks across Renfrewshire have been handed a £500,000 boost.

One of the projects to benefit is a new community park that will be created in the Spateston area of Johnstone.

It has received £40,000 from Renfrewshire Council’s Green Spaces, Parks and Play Areas and Villages Investment Fund, after previously being awarded £50,000 for phase one.

The Gazette: Johnstone man Lewis NesbittJohnstone man Lewis Nesbitt

Lewis Nesbitt, chair of the Spateston Tenants’ and Residents’ Association, said: “This will make Renfrewshire Council the majority funder, alongside Fleming Construction, Arnold Clark Community Fund and funds raised by the community for the community.

“The total investment will be around £100,000 and is the first step to establishing what we see as a destination park for south-west Johnstone.”

It is hoped the new Spateston play park will be installed by the end of the year.

Lochwinnoch Public Park, Houston Helicopter Play Park and Queens Road Play Park, in Elderslie, will all benefit from new equipment.

In Paisley, Maxwellton Play Park and Sensory Garden will be upgraded, Ferguslie Park Gardens will get an outdoor gym, St Mirren Youth Football Club will get cash to secure a boundary fence and West End Growing Grounds will be able to buy new tools for gardeners.

A new multi-use games area has been approved for Langbank, featuring football goals, basketball hoops, a tennis court and floodlights.

The Gazette: The new-look Howwood Park has been popular with local kidsThe new-look Howwood Park has been popular with local kids

Funding has also been set aside for improvements at the Kilbarchan Community Garden and for an outdoor shelter in Howwood Park, which has previously benefitted from new equipment.

And the windfall will mean the Tuecheen Ancient Woods, in Inchinnan, and the Rossland Circle, in Bishopton, can be purchased by community groups and developed.

Councillor Marie McGurk, Renfrewshire’s communities, housing and planning convener, said: “This fund has been a fantastic way for local community groups to make a real, visible difference to their area.”

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