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First target reached for Minehead EYE climbing room
AN innovative campaign to raise a quarter of the cash needed to build a bouldering facility at Minehead EYE has reached its £5,000 on-line target.
The crowd-funding campaign saw more than 100 people give money on Lottery-funded website Spacehive to build the indoor climbing room.
The project is likely to cost about £20,000 and grant applications will be looked upon more favourably after people showed their support by raising a significantinitial figure.
Unlike traditional climbing, bouldering does not need ropes or supervision as it is low-level and made safe by thick foam matting below.
Minehead EYE chairman Naomi Griffith said: “We are over the moon to have reached our target in time.
We have been completely overwhelmed with the support the community has given us, both in encouragement and in donations.
“Adding this new climbing facility will be a real boost for Minehead EYE and provide a really exciting new opportunity to our many hundreds of members and the wider community.
“The community has really rallied round this idea – we have had donations from more than 100 individuals as well as from a range of local businesses.
“County councillors Christine Lawrence and BrendaMaitlandWalker have also kindly supported the campaign through contributions from the Health and Wellbeing Funds.”
As well as raising money online, the team’s efforts were boosted by Williton firm Fatyak Kayaks, which gave a sea kayak auctioned in a secret ballot, raising more than £300 from winning bidder Rick Milliship.
Centre manager Joe Heley said: “Bouldering is an increasingly popular and fast-growing sportin the UK butfacilities are usually restricted to big towns and cities.
"By raising money to get a bouldering room at Minehead EYE we willbe able to bring all the fun and benefits to local users.”
The Minehead EYE team hopes to secure the remaining money needed to build the bouldering wall through grants and has been supported by Minehead Town Council in its application to West Somerset Council to request a contribution from section 106 planning gain funds towards the project.
The district council’s cabinet will discuss the application next month and if all goes to plan the facility should be open by the summer holidays.