CCTV in new Spotts Newlands community park

| 13/09/2010

(CNS): In his keynote speech at the official opening of the Cecile Crighton Community Park in Spotts Newlands, Police Commissioner David Baines said the police service was winning the battle on crime and that community parks can help reduce crime rates, according to a release from Rotary Sunrise, which spearheaded the project. The state-of-the-art recreational facility includes not only the usual swings and slides but also free wireless Internet access, 24-hour closed-circuit television security, and a small rock-climbing wall. Other notable amenities in the lushly landscaped park are a basketball half-court, a gazebo, a barbeque area, picnic tables, seating area and restrooms.

The opening of the new park at the corner of Chime Street and Mocking Bird Crescent was celebrated on Wednesday evening, 8 September.

As the park will be enjoyed by both children and adults, Rotary Sunrise Youth Services Director Frank Balderamos announced a youth photography competition called 10Ten10 that will be held on the tenth day of the tenth month 2010.

Balderamos also noted that the park opening coincided with International Literacy Day, providing an opportune time for Rotary Sunrise to present to the principals of North Side, East End and George Town Primary schools boxes of books donated by cruise ship passengers. The books were donated through the Children’s Book Donation programme and the Festival of the Sea. Literacy Director Maree Martins, with the help of other Rotarians, presented a total of 832 books to the three schools that day.

In a release following the opening, Rotary Sunrise said that, in all, 60 sponsors contributed to the project by way of financial contribution or in-kind donations. Some individuals contributed funds on a voluntary basis and plaques have been mounted around the park to recognize these people. Sunrise Rotarian Claude Myles, who is a Spotts Newlands resident and main coordinator of the park construction effort, had a vision to create the park some eight months ago when he strolled by with his wife and noticed graffiti on the power poles and fences. The release said that Myles worked tirelessly to see the facility develop from a grassy piece of land to a new high-tech community park.

Rotary Sunrise Community Service Director Kim Remizowski was the MC for the evening. The program began with Karen Edie singing the National Song followed by the blessing of the park by Past President of Rotary Sunrise Gordon Hewitt. Rotarian Claude Myles gave the vote of thanks.

President of Rotary Sunrise Michael Levitt gave an address in which he thanked the Crighton family for the donation of the land and their financial support. He also recognized Past President Winston Connolly for his support and dedication to the project in his year as President of Rotary Sunrise. President Michael then thanked Rotarians Claude Myles and David Watler for coordinating the daily and weekly activities and for their countless volunteer hours of work towards the community park. He also recognized the Rotary Sunrise members and their families who came out every weekend to assist with the manual labor. In his closing, he officially handed the park over to the Spotts Newlands community for them to enjoy.

Chief Magistrate Margaret Ramsey-Hale, an Honorary Rotarian and resident of the Spotts Newlands area, spoke about how the park would be enjoyed by all families in the neighborhood. She alluded to how parks bring communities together and how a sense of “community watch” is born through a facility like the Cecile Crighton Park.

The keynote speaker for the evening was Police Commissioner David Baines, also an Honorary Rotarian. He spoke about how the police force was winning the battle on crime and how community parks can help reduce crime rates. He was impressed by how the private sector, neighborhood residents and Rotary Sunrise came together so quickly to bring this project to fruition, the release said. He thanked all the people involved in the project and wished to see more community parks appear on the island.

The ceremonial ribbon cutting was performed by Honorary Rotarian Rex Crighton, President Michael Levitt of Rotary Sunrise and Rotarian Claude Myles. Refreshments were served after the event as children played in the new facility. Residents and ceremony attendees mingled until dark.

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