HEARTFELT: Staff at Technimark raised £500 for Wesley Terrace play area renovation fund. Seen with the cash are Grace Crawford, Sue Gowland, Faye Docherty, Stephen Shaw, Ali Collinson, Bridget Marshall, Michelle Mitchell and Brenda Robinson
HEARTFELT: Staff at Technimark raised £500 for Wesley Terrace play area renovation fund. Seen with the cash are Grace Crawford, Sue Gowland, Faye Docherty, Stephen Shaw, Ali Collinson, Bridget Marshall, Michelle Mitchell and Brenda Robinson

HAND-WRITTEN letters from children asking for help to raise funds to renovate a play park “tugged at the heart string” of staff at a dale pharmaceutical firm who went on to raise cash for the project.

Wesley Terrace play area, in Middleton-in-Teesdale, had to close last year when equipment was deemed unsafe. Since then a working group made up of volunteers and parish councillors have been raising cash to renovate the playground.

And to encourage residents and businesses to help raise funds, children who use the play area penned letters. One of those letters was sent to Stephen Shaw, managing director of Technimark, which is based in the village.

Mr Shaw said he showed the letter to his staff and they were unanimous in the decision to help out. He said: “We do fund raise a lot each year, but they really tugged at our heart-strings when we got the letter. We’re quite a small team here, but we do try and do our bit.”

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He added the money was raised through a variety of activities, organised by staff including raffles and cake sales. He said an auction to get an extra day’s holiday was very popular with many staff bidding for the prize.

The cheque for £500 was handed over to members of Wesley Terrace Play working group at Technimark’s headquarters.

Volunteer Grace Crawford said plans for the renovation were progressing well and a recent open day where residents were able to put forward their own ideas was very well attended. She thanked Technimark for the donation and said the running total for the play park funds is in the region of £10,000.

She added: “We’re really grateful for all the money that has been donated. At the moment we are still pressing ahead with fund-raising as we don’t know how much we will need until the final design is agreed.”