London Marathon funds new children’s play area on West Hackney recreation ground

The London Marathon takes place this weekend – but one Stoke Newington church is already celebrating a big result.

St Paul’s Church on Stoke Newington Road won �75,000 from the London Marathon Charitable Trust, which donates the surplus money from each race to community sports and recreation. The money will be used to build a new children’s play area at West Hackney recreation ground.

Niall Weir, rector of St Paul’s, said: “I’m delighted. We were aware that a lot of other people are bidding for funding, so it’s great to know we were successful.

“In this immediate area, there’s nowhere to take your kids. I imagine when the recreation ground was first opened it was beautiful and much used but, over the years, it’s become abandoned and not particularly well looked after.”

The church has also put in a bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund for money to regenerate the whole recreation ground, which was West Hackney Church’s burial site until the 1880s.

St Paul’s will find out whether its bid has been successful later this year.

Overall, 59 projects in and around London won grants from the London Marathon charity, totalling more than �5.3m.