Audley Harrison visits Stonebridge Adventure Playground in fight for survival

11:21 08 November 2010

Audley Harrison joins youth worker, Colin Hunter, and Stonebridge councillor, Zaffar Van Kalwala with boxing and playground fans who hope the council will think again.

Audley Harrison joins youth worker, Colin Hunter, and Stonebridge councillor, Zaffar Van Kalwala with boxing and playground fans who hope the council will think again.

Jan Nevill

Boxing champ throws his towel into the ring

WORLD heavyweight boxing contender Audley Harrison took time out of his busy schedule to get behind a kids’ adventure playground earmarked for closure.

The former Olympic gold medallist from Kingsbury, who will be fighting David Haye on Saturday for the WBA Crown, joined play worker, Colin Hunter, amid chaotic scenes as the children fought to get close to the star at Stonebridge Adventure Playground.

Audley said: “Keep the Stonebridge Adventure Playground open forever. The fight starts now.”

The playground, off Hillside, Stonebridge, which Audley visited as a child, is expected to close in February after its Big Lottery funding dries up.

Mr Hunter said: “The council is allowing the adventure playground to close but they have not heard the last of this. We will be planning protests and marches.

“There are a lot disadvantaged kids in Brent and on the Stonebridge estate and the playground is a good way to mentor them; it’s safe and they can take risks here.”

Brent Play Association has run the playground for 40 years for five-year-olds to late teens and is open seven days a week.

A spokesman for BPA said: “In 1988 Brent Council cut funding support to the Adventure Playground. Since this time the BPA charity has kept the site going. Over the last three years funding from the Big Lottery has been used.

“The entire community now wish Brent Council to give support to keep the Centre open, so it can continue its good work. The Council did give us £200,000 in August but this was for after school and holiday activities.”

Stonebridge councillor, Zaffar Van Kawala, welcomed the boxer to the playground saying ‘it gave a real boost to everyone’ but disputed the Council’s responsibility.

He said: “The Council has already pledged its support to BPA. In August 2010, the Council’s Executive agreed to give BPA £200,000 to provide play services in Brent including agreeing to pay the running and utility costs relating to BPA’s use and occupation of the Stonebridge Centre for the running of play schemes. The site is also council owned which BPA have used for past the 30 years rent-free.”

A Council spokeswoman said: “The Stonebridge Adventure Playground is funded by the Big Lottery Fund until March 2011. To date there has been no discussion or decisions taken about how funding will be designated next year.”

Latest News Stories

Yesterday, 12:55
Che Labastide-Wellington was stabbed to death on November 8

An 18-year-old man has become the 13th person to be arrested in connection with the murder of a teenager outside a 16th birthday party in Kenton.

Yesterday, 08:00
Left to right: Borough commanders Michael Gallagher from Brent, Adrian Usher from Barnet and Simon Ovens from Harrow

Met Police chiefs are considering merging the police borough commanders in Brent, Harrow and Barnet into a single role as part of a dramatic shake-up of policing aimed at slashing £800 million from budgets, it has been revealed.

Saturday, November 28, 2015
Children from St Joseph's Junior School at the opening of the ice rink

A winter ice rink has opened in Wembley Park.

Friday, November 27, 2015
Brent Council plan to hike the price of parking for visitors

An online petition has been launched calling for Brent Council to abandon its plans to hike up parking charges by 200 per cent.

Friday, November 27, 2015
Danny Taylor has been charged with eight counts of robbery

A man has been charged with carrying out eight violent street robberies, some armed, in Willesden and Dollis Hill.

Friday, November 27, 2015
How the proposed tower blocks will look

Plans have been submitted to Brent Council proposing to develop the site of a former office block in Wembley into two towers contaning 239 new homes.

Friday, November 27, 2015
Kocik with Marta Ligman

An abusive boyfriend who murdered his girlfriend before stuffing her in a suitcase and dumping it in canal has been jailed for life today.

Friday, November 27, 2015
The Ade Adepitan Short Breaks Centre rated outstanding by Ofsted education chiefs

A centre in Kingsbury for young people with special needs which was named after a paralympian wheelchair star has been rated outstanding by education watchdogs, Ofsted.

Most read news


MAC Makeup

MAC are renowned for their flawless, fabulous make up that is used worldwide by the stars. You too can have the chance to have the perfect makeup to suit your needs with £1,000 to spend on all the glam goodies you like!


You are never far from an Argos, wherever in the country you may be. They are like a magical cavern where whatever you need they seem to have it out the back behind the counter. So why not put them to the test with this great MyOffers competition to win £1000 to spend in-store.

Digital Edition

Read the Brent & Kilburn Times e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder