A LOTTERY-FUNDED group is urging more residents to get involved in their community this year.

Leigh Neighbours is keen to support schemes, campaigns and events in the area and hopes more people will volunteer their time.

The group, which is based on Walmesley Road, is led by a management board made up of residents and others involved in the community such as head teachers and ward councillors.

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Chairwoman of Leigh Neighbours Susan Gredecki said: “In spite of some well-documented challenges here in Leigh West, 2019 has been memorable for many positive reasons.

"Friendship has been a consistent theme.

"We’ve seen familiar faces at our popular seasonal hanging basket workshops, and made new friends at events such as the November coffee morning we organised in partnership with The Tim Parry Jonathan Ball Peace Foundation.

"Getting to know our neighbours was also the message at Global Friends, an event we recently sponsored in support of young people from migrant families.

"In fact, creating opportunities for residents to make new friends is a constant thread running through all we do.

“We have more volunteers working with Leigh Neighbours than ever before, all committed to making a positive difference here in Leigh West, and all demonstrating a ‘can do’ attitude which we hope will drive even more people to get involved.

"We’re very grateful to our volunteers, and to those who have applied to our Resident’s Fund.

"We rely on our partners ‘at the coalface’ to deliver events, activities and initiatives that improve the lives of local people, and we’re delighted to play our part in “helping them help others” with our accessible funding programme.

“Nurturing community relationships has never been more important.

"All those involved in Leigh Neighbours are proud of the collaborative approach we take, which sees us working in partnership with local agencies, charities, community groups, schools, churches, businesses and, of course, local residents.

“As well as reflecting on the past, this time of year is also when you naturally look ahead.

"We’re beginning to put plans in place for 2020 and we’re keen to hear the ideas of local people.

"Helping to build a stronger, more tolerant community has always been one of Leigh Neighbours priorities, and it will continue to be one of our driving ambitions for 2020.

"Expanding our work in helping to raise the aspirations of young people, helping to make our project area ‘cleaner and greener’ and creating opportunities for local people.

"That’s what our 2020 is going to be all about."

Since it was set up in 2012 with a £1m investment from charity Local Trust, Leigh Neighbours has been working to help address a range of social, economic and environmental challenges.

If you are interested in getting involved or finding out more about Leigh Neighbours email info@lnpb.org.uk, visit lnpb.org.uk or drop in to 14 Walmesley Road.