Dear Richard Arnold and Mark Sorrell,
I am writing on behalf of Save Leyton Marsh group. We would like to repeat the request we have made at several meetings with the ODA that your organisation ensures positive legacy benefits for the local community. As the local community have suffered the loss of Leyton Marsh and numerous other green spaces including East Marsh, it would be good if, for a fraction of the sums spent on development of these previously public spaces, you could allocate a small amount of funds in order to improve local facilities for the long-term benefit of local young people.
At the last public meeting with the ODA, a local young basketball enthusiast had his request to visit the basketball facilities on Leyton Marsh refused. As the basketball facilities will not be opened for local young people to see the athletes train, we would like to offer an alternative way in which the ODA could go some way towards compensating the community for the loss of marsh for the duration of at least 8 months.
There are park basketball courts located very near to Leyton Marsh on South Millfields in Hackney and at Leyton Manor Park on Capworth Road in Leyton. We know that subsequent to the last ODA meeting Mark met one of the members of our campaign, Zee and asked for directions to the Hackney courts. We hope that he was able to visit the courts on Millfields and could see the difference a small amount of investment could make to these courts. The courts are well used by local children and teenagers and would benefit from an upgrade, particularly as regards to the surface quality.
We hope that you will consider our request, which is supported by Millfields Park User Group, the people of Hackney and Leyton, local councillors Barry Buitekant and Ian Rathbone, and former Olympic basketball athlete Carl Miller who adds the following words:
I would like to add my support to the campaign to provide quality basketball facilities to the local people of Hackney and Leyton. With a small amount of investment these park courts can be converted to a first class facilities for our young people. For a fraction of what has been spent on the athletes training centre we could be encouraging our future generation to become athletes, to live healthy fulfilling lives – our next generation is suffering due to this lack of consideration and investment. Please do not neglect our youth – they need us.
A photo of the courts with local youngsters playing with athlete Carl Miller on South Millfields is attached.
Caroline Day (Save Leyton Marsh Group)
Carl Miller (founder of Look Up to Yourself)