LOCAL resident Marina Wyborn became a ‘celebrity’ for the day at the official opening of the Acreshort Community Park at Steeple Ashton.

The villager’s name was picked out of a box by local Wiltshire Council ward member Jonathon Seed to cut the tape to mark official opening of the village’s latest asset.

The ceremony took place on Saturday despite the appalling wet weather.

Organiser Pippa Birch, chairman of the Acreshort Community Park committee, said: “It was just a really lovely day. There must have been about 200 people there for the opening.

“It has been a real community effort and we’re so grateful to all those people who have helped.”

The park used to be the playing fields for the village school. It was sold by Wiltshire Council to the Steeple Ashton Parish Council.

Over the past year or so, it has received more than £30,000 of investment in new play and fitness equipment for children and adults.

The community park now houses the Steeple Ashton Guide hut, a car park, a climbing frame, dual swing, basket swing and spinners. It also has pull up bars, cross trainers, and a rowing machine to help keep villagers fit and healthy.

Most of the funds came from the Steeple Ashton Recreation Group, but the Melksham Area Board chipped in £4,000, and Aviva and Tesco also contributed.

Local residents and companies donated cash to help equip the community park for use by young and old. They also hope to install a nature trail.

Saturday’s official opening included Women’s Institute cream teas in a marquee, and stalls for the village film club, church, shop and The Friends of Steeple Ashton.

A raffle raised over £550 and the local pub, the Longs Arms, ran a cash bar.

The Steeple Ashton Model Railway Club opened up its clubhouse for a model railway display.