Prince William who is an avid defender of playing fields has backed a new scheme that has been set up to save our playing fields. The new scheme, the Queen Elizabeth II Fields Challenge, aims to give legal protection to 2,012 fields by 2012. Here the scheme’s patron, Prince William, explains why it is so important:
SOMEWHERE for children to play, somewhere for everyone to gather should be a right, not a luxury.
Yet thousands of neighbourhoods up and down the country have lost recreational space over the past decades, with many more fields under threat today. Being able to spend time outdoors in the fresh air, taking exercise or just going for a walk, is essential for a person’s wellbeing.
For children and teenagers, fields provide an outlet for their energy and passion, a springboard for developing potential skills.
If the UK is to boast tomorrow’s Olympic champions or World Cup winning footballers, these places must be protected. This is where the stars of the future will first discover their talents. But such places are not just life-changing and life-enhancing for children. For all of us, whatever age, somewhere away from stressful and overcrowded lives, closely accessible, is a sanctuary.
I am therefore incredibly proud to be Patron of The Queen Elizabeth II Fields, a project that will safeguard hundreds of fields by the year 2012, when we will celebrate two momentous occasions: The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the Olympic Games.
Why “The Queen Elizabeth II Fields“? Simple – It’s a tribute to The Queen for her six decades of duty, dedication and commitment to this country. I can’t think of a more fitting tribute: Millions of people up and down the country enjoying the benefits of the outdoors for generations to come, and remembering The Queen for it.
And this is something for you. From next year, you will be able to vote for your favourite outdoor space to become a Queen Elizabeth II Field. When the time comes, please join me in supporting this incredibly important challenge.
The Queen Elizabeth II Fields will be eligible to apply to a £1million fund for improvement grants provided by the SITA Trust that will be opened in 2011. All kinds of outdoor spaces can participate and Fields In Trust would like as many local authorities as possible to sign up to the scheme.
To find out more visit qe2fields.com.
Maybe Waltham Forest Council will have second thoughts in allowing Drapers Field to be concreted over for use by the Olympic Authority?
Liberal Democrat Petition – Our petition to Save Drapers Field is still running and I hope to make representations the Planning Committee in January.
You can sign up on line at:http://ourcampaign.org.uk/DrapersField
Please encourage your friends and neighbours to support this historic site.
Paper copies of the petition can also be printed if you would like to collect signatures to support the campaign.