A WORCESTER-based housing association has made a generous donation of thousands of pounds towards new play equipment for Ombersley children.

Fortis Living donated £5,000 to Ombersley Play Area Action Group (OPAG) earlier this year.

The new equipment has been made available through Fortis Living’s SMILE fund – Spending Money Improving Local Environments. Each year the social landlord sets aside £60,000 to help its customers make improvements to their local communities.

The first phase of the project – which was completed earlier this month – will benefit the residents of Ombersley with the play equipment located in the heart of the village on the recreation field.

Chris Colley, community officer at Fortis Living, said: “Our SMILE fund is all about helping people to make a difference to the areas where they live, from creating attractive and safe environments to improving social and recreational facilities.

"The new play equipment in Ombersley will ensure local children are healthy and active and will serve as an area where villagers can come together socially.”

Susannah Perkins from OPAG said : “We are absolutely delighted that our application to the Fortis SMILE fund was successful.

"The play area was last upgraded more than 20 years ago and was in desperate need of regeneration. Alongside the Fortis donation, we received other grants and undertook our own fundraising so we could make a start on our plans.

"So far we have replaced the rotten climbing frame and installed a basket swing which has completely transformed the village play area.

"We are keen to add further equipment such as a wheelchair accessible roundabout so watch this space."

The next fundraiser, a Promises Auction, is being held between Monday October 8 and Sunday, October 28. Bids can be placed at auctionofpromises.com/2018auctionOPAG.