Beaming smiles on show as local children enjoy toy donations
18 Jan 2023
Big beaming smiles have been on show this week as children at Colchester Toy Library and Grove Pre-School have been enjoying new handmade toys to play with after a donation from John Sisk & Son Ltd (Sisk), National Highways contractor delivering the ongoing A12 Marks Tey to Stanway concrete road reconstruction.
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Every year, apprentice carpenters at Sisk hand craft wooden toys, such as rocking horses and cars, that are donated to the community where they are working. The toys are intended to leave a legacy for children in the community to enjoy for many years to come.
IMAGE: Children at Colchester Toy Library enjoy the new handmade wooden rocking horse
The team delivering National Highways concrete road scheme in Essex chose two non-profit organisations to donate the toys to this year. The first was Colchester Toy Library, a local charity running since 1984 offering a relaxed place for children to play, explore and grow. The charity also runs a toy lending scheme to all families in Colchester to help promote play and the sharing of resources.
The second set of toys were donated to Grove Pre-School in Stanway, with the wooden toys getting an overwhelming reception from the children when the Sisk team delivered them.
IMAGE: (L-R) Councillor Lesley Scott-Boutell, Chairperson Carolyn Raynor, Sisk Social Value adviser Kenny Hughes, teachers Sharon Smith from and Lesley Richard
Paul Browne, Sisk Senior Project Manager, said: “It was great to meet the staff and see how the children loved the toys. Delivering the toys to the two organisations was very different to my normal work and it was a privilege to be able to give back to the community in this way.”
Karl Brooks, National Highways Programme Delivery Manager, said: “Working with and finding ways to give back to the local community is key to National Highways, so it’s fantastic to see photos of children with beaming smiles as our partners at Sisk delivered the two sets of handmade toys to the community groups.”
IMAGE: One of the toys built by a Sisk apprentice carpenter
National Highways is currently delivering a £37m project to reconstruct and resurface the concrete road surface of the A12 carriageway between Marks Tey (junction 25) and Stanway (junction 26), as a part of its nationwide drive to revitalise concrete roads across the country.
Decades of use and hundreds of millions of journeys have left the road in need of vital upgrades, which will improve safety, create a smoother road surface and reduce noise for drivers who travel on this stretch.
The scheme will see National Highways completely remove the concrete road surface and some of the foundations, before rebuilding the road with recycled material and a new smooth asphalt road surface. It’s expected the scheme will be complete in early 2024.
To find out more about the A12 Marks Tey to Stanway concrete road scheme, visit: nationalhighways.co.uk/our-roads/east-news/upgrading-our-concrete-roads-across-the-east-of-england/