THE future of an attractive woodland, a play area and seven other pieces of land in Warrington have been secured thanks to a deal between the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) and the Land Trust.
Ownership of the land will be transferred to public space management charity the Land Trust, together with a legacy fund to cover future management costs.
The nine sites, known as the Warrington Community Related Assets, were originally created from residential and commercial developments associated with the Warrington New Town project.
In addition to the woodland and play area, they include a tree-lined walkway into the countryside, an inert ex-landfill site that's now an appealing open space and two areas of grassland.  
Euan Hall, chief executive of the Land Trust said: "The value of these spaces should not be underestimated because they provide places to play, walk the dog, have a kick-about and provide access to a wider network of green spaces.  
"They helped provide an attractive landscape which has played and continues to play a vital part in the success of the Warrington New Town."   
Delyse Bailey, area manager at the HCA, added: "The creation and on-going maintenance of attractive public spaces will not only benefit the community but also play a vital role in promoting economic growth in Warrington."
The Trust already has some 441 pockets of land in Warrington covering more than 73 hectares, which the HCA transferred to them in 2007.   
Mr Hall said: "The initial transfer of land has worked very well for all concerned. Generally land is considered to be an asset and public spaces are certainly of great value to the people that live nearby and use them.
"On the other hand, failure to maintain this land, would significantly reduce the appeal of the area and subsequently affect its economic viability."
Most of the land involved is  in the Longbarn, Westbrook and South Warrington areas.   
The Land Trust - based at Birchwood, Warrington - is a not for profit organisation providing a cost effective management solution for open space and green infrastructure.