New Basketball Court at Makins Recreation Ground Officially Opens

The public basketball court at Makins Recreation Ground was officially opened last Friday. The idea for the court was originally proposed by young resident and Gillotts School pupil George Allen to Henley Town Council in November 2021.

The project received funding from Henley Town Council, South Oxfordshire District Council Community Grants, Everyone Active Grants, Tesco Community Grant, and Thamesfield Youth Association. George and his mother, Stephanie, were special guests at the opening ceremony, which was also attended by Mayor Rory Hunt, Town Councillor Gill Dodds, and Town Clerk Sheridan Jacklin-Edward.

To celebrate the official opening, Head Coach Jay Garcia from the Magic Hoops basketball academy ran a session for the kids, teaching them skills and games.

George expressed his joy, saying, “I am very happy it is finally done. There were a few complications in the beginning, but now it’s finally finished. It makes me happy to see everyone playing on it. It’s bringing everyone together, including young ones.”

A plaque recognising George’s contribution to the court, gifted by the Henley Herald, will soon be installed.

George’s mother shared her pride, saying, “George is full of ideas, and it was just really nice to see him follow through with one of his passions. I think this will be good for him to bring forward in other parts of his life. It’s lovely that he has got this to always come to and know that he did it. It has been quite a project, but I think he’s proud. I think it’s so good for his self-esteem, and I’m thrilled that it actually came to fruition in the end.”

Mayor Rory Hunt added, “I’m delighted to see so many young people come down. It’s brilliant to see a new facility that is going to help young people keep fit and enjoy themselves. It’s a beautiful location with a great view. George has done really well campaigning for this, and I’m delighted to finally see it open and being used.”

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