Finchingfield outdoor gym is already proving a hit with villagers

The new outdoor gym in Finchingfield

The new outdoor gym in Finchingfield - Credit: Archant

A village’s new outdoor gym which opened on Saturday (March 5) is already popular.

David Coverdale enjoys the new outdoor gym

David Coverdale enjoys the new outdoor gym - Credit: Archant

The equipment has been installed in Finchingfield Playing Field and on Sunday there were times when every piece was in use.

The venture is the vision of Rosario Coverdale who visited her friend Carol in Billericay in November, saw an outdoor gym there and didn’t rest until she got one installed in her home village.

Mrs Coverdale told the Broadcast: “Carol said, we’re going to the gym. I said I’m not dressed for the gym. Then she took me to a park. I was just blown away with it. I thought that’s just what we need in Finchingfield.”

She added: “My friend has a lung condition and using her outdoor gym has improved her lung capacity.”

Georgia Spiro and Henry Smallman use the gym

Georgia Spiro and Henry Smallman use the gym - Credit: Archant

The equipment is the Cardio Package supplied by the equipment company Caloo. It cost just under £7,000, paid for by The Creamer Fund, a medical charity, set up in Finchingfield in 1999 after a donation made to the Freshwells Health Centre by a grateful relative of a former patient. The donation led to a committee set up to receive other bequests and to fundraise so medical equipment not supplied by the NHS could be provided for the village. Committee chairman Chris Blewett told the Broadcast: “This is not

medical equipment but our purpose is to provide for people’s health and prevention is better than cure.”

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Freshwells Health Centre is the contact point for the Creamer Fund. Finchingfield Parish Council paid for the gym’s installation and for maintenance for the next five years. Sand, cement and other materials were donated by G B Finch.

Mrs Coverdale, said: “This is for people of all ages. One comment I had was from a young woman who has heart disease in her family.

“She said she had to keep fit but not everyone can afford the gym fees. This gym is free for all, 365 days a year, in the great outdoors, it can’t get better than that.”