Olivia, 10, wins Hampstead Heath officials over to playground fundraiser
- Credit: Sally Patterson
A 10-year-old girl has convinced Hampstead Heath officials to improve one of the park’s playgrounds after raising more than £1,000 by selling jam.
Olivia White, who lives next to the Heath, sold more than 100 jars of jam made out of blackberries she picked in the summer to fundraise for a renovated play area on the extension.
The move by the City of London Corporation (CoLC) represents a U-turn after it originally reprimanded the schoolgirl for foraging the berries, saying this breached its bylaws.
Last Tuesday, Olivia met with park officials including the Heath’s superintendent to discuss the playground plans, which are expected to cost £40,000.
The St Christopher's School pupil said: “The fundraising will be hard but I believe it is the right time to do so, as the playground is the only place where kids can be free, be ourselves and have fun.
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"It massively helps our mental health, especially during these sad times.”
A CoLC spokesperson said: “We’re really pleased to be working with Olivia to try and expand the age range of the playgrounds and to introduce opportunities for natural play at the Heath Extension play enclosure.
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“We very much welcome Olivia’s approach to generating support and donations from the local community for this project and commend her on the enthusiasm and community spirit she has shown.”
Donate to Olivia’s fundraiser at www.wildwooders.uk
*Video music credit: https://www.bensound.com/