Friends of Amy's Park fundraising for a bench in memory of Jodie
PUBLISHED: 07:00 18 April 2019
Members of the Harold Hill community are trying to raise £500 so a memorial bench can be installed to remember teenager Jodie Chesney who was stabbed to death in Amy's Park.
The Friends of Amy's Park Facebook group – set up to remember Jodie after her death – has already planted purple flowers at the park just off St Neot's Road, and Tracy Hampton, who started the group, is now hoping to raise money for a metal bench.
It would be painted purple and replace the one which is already in the park.
Jodie was stabbed to death at the start of March, and since the tragic incident tributes have been paid to her all across the world.
Purple was Jodie's favourite colour, and the streets of Havering have been lined with purple ribbons and purple flowers since her death.
This isn't the only memorial to Jodie the Friends of Amy's Park group has organised.
Flowers that have already been planted in the park were donated by B&Q and now the group is hoping the public can donate to create a permanent memorial to Jodie in the park.
The group is hoping to raise around £500, which would cover the cost of the bench with a memorial plaque, and any other funds would go towards new play equipment.
Havering Council confirmed it is looking to help install the new play area, which would include a small 5-a-side football area and activity space.
Councillor Osman Dervish, cabinet member for environment, said: “After speaking with local residents and ward councillors about ideas for a new play area in St Neot's open space, also known as Amy's Park, it was agreed we would look to install a new children's play area.
“The new play area will be funded externally with government funding and we are currently in the process of gathering designs and costings, before seeking the views of the wider community.
“In regards to a memorial bench, we would first speak to Jodie's family to seek their guidance on how they would like her memory to be honoured.”
Tracy told the Recorder: “It is just too close to home, I have a daughter who is a similar age to Jodie.
“It is scary what is happening at the moment, and I dread to think it could have been my daughter.
“The support of the community so far is amazing and we're hoping it continues.
“The group was created as a community voice, and we have all spoken about what we can do to make sure Jodie is remembered and we thought that a bench was the best idea, and we are also hoping to get new purple play equipment in the park.
“My youngest daughter used to play in the park everyday, but now there is a dark cloud over it and we want to take that away.”
To donate to the new bench go to the JustGiving page.