Outdoor gym equipment installed on Hingham playing field to help keep residents fitter

Alison Lys, front, and Bonnie Driver of the Hingham Playing Field Association try out the new fitnes

Alison Lys, front, and Bonnie Driver of the Hingham Playing Field Association try out the new fitness equipment, watched by South Norfolk district councillor Yvonne Bendle and Tony Abel of Abel Homes. Picture: ANDY NEWMAN - Credit: Archant

Outdoor gym equipment has been installed on a village playing field to help its residents keep fitter and healthier.

Watton-based Abel Homes, which is currently building 88 new family homes in Hingham, near Wymondham, funded the £22,000 equipment as part of its Section 106 agreement to contribute towards amenities in the village.

The nine fitness and resistance machines are situated on opposite sides of the playing field, to encourage users to incorporate them into their fitness regimes.

The equipment, some of which can be used by wheelchair users, is available for use free of charge.

Helping to unveil the new equipment, councillor Yvonne Bendle - who represents Hingham on South Norfolk Council and is South Norfolk Council's cabinet member for housing, wellbeing, leisure and early intervention - said: 'Often Section 106 money is used to provide play equipment for children, but we are well provided for in the village as far as that goes.

'So we decided to do something different.

'People have been asking for fitness equipment for the village, so we asked Abel Homes to fund that instead.'

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The fitness equipment is the latest in a number of community initiatives undertaken by Abel Homes since it started building the new homes, off Norwich Road in the village.

These include the creation of a specially-brewed ale, the proceeds of which have been donated to Hingham Town Council to spend on local amenities.

The firm has also sponsored the Hingham Hornets football team and Hingham Cricket Club, built a 200 metre fence for Hingham Primary School's new Forest School and commissioned a piece of public artwork to be situated on the new community of homes.

'As a local house builder, we take our responsibilities to the local communities where we are building very seriously,' said Abel Homes chairman Tony Abel.

'We try and adopt a collaborative approach with parish and local councils to ensure that we fulfil our obligations – and more – in a way which best benefits everybody in the local community.'

The first families moved into their new homes at The Hops in Hingham last summer.

For more details, visit www.abelhomes.co.uk