AN EXTENSIVE $135,000 landscape project is underway at the Elizabeth Chifley Presbyterian Preschool.
The 41-year-old facility has catered to thousands of preschoolers in its time, and this will be the first makeover the garden has ever received.
Bathurst Presbyterian Church Reverend, and preschool board chair, David Whittingham said the works have been a number of years in the making.
“We’ve wanted to develop something new and fresh for the preschool for a couple of years,” he said.
The garden will receive a number of new additions including: a new sandpit and digging area, a tunnel, climbing frame, double slide, outdoor kitchen and a number of sensory areas.
Two stage areas will also be constructed for children to dance on or hold puppet shows.
“There will also be a number of open-ended activity areas for children to make up their own activities,” Mr Whittingham said.
“It’s all natural, with a wooden deck and a walkway among the plants.”
New plants and shrubs will also be added.
Centre manager Julie Moore said the works will be a benefit for children and staff.
“It’s really exciting that the children will experience these new things,” she said.
Mr Whittingham said the works have been made possible thanks to church funds and a number of grants, including from the Australian Government ($60,000), NSW Government ($12,500) and a $7500 Transgrid Community Partnerships Program.
It’s really exciting that the children will experience these new things.Centre director Julie Moore
“It’s not the playground that makes our children great, it’s the staff, and as a board we wanted to make sure they have everything they need,” he said.
The landscape project is due for completion by the end of the month
Also about to have a makeover is the Bathurst Presbyterian Church, located next door.
The church’s $450,000 upgrade will include a new entrance on the Howick Street side with room for cars to drop off people at the door.
The entry ramp will be upgraded and more toilets added. Some pews will be altered and others removed to allow for more people to sit during services and to make the area more accessible.
A cry room will be built for parents of young children, also a connecting hallway will be constructed between the church and the hall.