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Partnership working has helped to brighten up a County Durham community.

Durham County Council’s Civic Pride team has joined construction company Balfour Beatty and people from volunteer charity St Margaret’s Centre to create new planters for the Whinney Hill area.

A large planter, which was already in place on a green close to Hallgarth Street, has been given a facelift. Balfour Beatty provided funding for a further 10 smaller planters as part of its Legacy Project, which has also seen work carried out to renovate Elvet Bridge in Durham City. The planters were made by St Margaret’s Centre volunteers.

St Margaret’s Centre, based in Durham City, offers people opportunities for volunteering and work experience with consideration for their abilities and mental health.

The council’s Find and Fix team has also been involved, with the team installing a new bench in Whinney Hill, cleaning a bus shelter and street furniture and carrying out painting. The team will install the new planters within the next few weeks after it finishes work on its current project in the area.

Cllr Mark Wilkes, the council’s Cabinet member for neighbourhoods and climate change, said: “A huge well done to everyone who has been involved in this project. It is fantastic to see these additions to the Whinney Hill community and I’m sure the planters will provide a welcome sight to residents of all ages.

“Brightening up our towns and villages in this way means members of the public can have even more pride in their community. It also encourages people to visit as well.”

Clare Davison, social value co-ordinator at Balfour Beatty, said: “Having completed the renovation of the iconic Elvet Bridge last year, we were delighted to team up with Durham County Council once more to commission planters through our community engagement work with St Margaret’s Centre.

“The new planters will brighten up the Whinney Hill area for local residents and visitors alike.”

Information about the Find and Fix team can be found at www.durham.gov.uk/findandfix  and on the team’s Facebook page by searching Find and Fix County Durham.

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