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9 July 2001
Over the last five years, six children have died and over five hundred have been injured, (some seriously) in the UK, from playing or straying onto construction sites. Countryside Properties recognises that the best way to reduce these numbers is to educate children as to the risks. To that end, the Company recently ran an interactive workshop that made 1,800 children aware of the dangers and hazards of building sites. Bob the Builder was used to tell the children, "building sites are out of bounds, please use your playgrounds", warning that although these areas may look exciting, they are actually extremely dangerous.
The Discovery Centre at Great Notley Garden Village was the venue for this year's 'Crucial Crew' safety awareness workshop, which has been run by Braintree District Council for the past five years, targeting 5-12 year old children in the local area. Talks have covered 11 risk issues including building sites, fire, strangers and farms.
This year Countryside took up the challenge of organising the two week building site workshop with much enthusiasm, constructing a mock construction site complete with Herras fencing, scaffolding, a mini excavator and various other dangers such as a water-filled trench.
Mark Foster, the Head of Health and Safety for Countryside Properties, explains, "The children toured the mock site and were then quizzed on what they had learnt from the day, each leaving with a Countryside goody bag and hopefully, no desire to play on building sites. We have run similarly successful workshops in the Basildon area recently and have been approached by other local authorities to do more in the near future."
Countryside officially handed over the Discovery Centre to Braintree District Council, for use by the local community, schools, clubs and local businesses in a ceremony attended by the Chairman of Countryside Properties PLC, Alan Cherry MBE and Councillor Jim Fyfe on 2nd July.
The Discovery Centre incorporates facilities for conservation and wildlife education as well as floodlit all-weather playing field and sports pitches. The eco-friendly building has been hailed as an architectural innovation, winning the 'Environmental Initiative of the Year' 2000 award. It has been made from sustainable materials, and includes a number of energy conserving features. It is entirely self-reliant in its energy requirements.
For more information please email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01277 260000.
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Information correct as at 09/07/2001