Christine’s years with the Friends

A SCARBOROUGH Friends group stalwart is stepping down from her role as chairman after seven years.

Christine Mark has been a driving force behind a number of developments at Peasholm Park during her time with the group.

She has taken the difficult decision to step down following an operation to remove a benign brain tumour.

Christine will officially stand down at the group’s annual general meeting, which will take place on April 24 at Scarborough Bowls Centre.

It is hoped that a new chairman will be elected on the night.

Christine, who was a founder member of the Friends in 2005, said: “It has been absolutely fabulous and I’ve enjoyed seeing the park develop and grow.

“Also, seeing the committee members and volunteers develop has been fantastic.”

She added that after trying to resign last year, and being talked out of it, she is now hoping to pass the role onto someone who can give it their all.

Christine said: “They’re a really strong committee. Every year they’ve got bigger, better and stronger, which is brilliant.

“I still want to be involved, but it will be in a more low-key way.”

The Peasholm Park Friends group was set up in 2005 following a series of meetings.

At the time, Christine offered to take on the role of chairman “for a year or two, if nobody else came forward”.

Seven years later, there have been a number of improvements and countless events at the much-loved park.

Early on, the group were delighted to receive a £38,000 Heritage Lottery Fund grant.

Christine said: “It was enough to kick start the Glen into looking god again, which felt fantastic.”

One of the projects was the “Tree Trail”, which documents the many rare and important trees in the Glen, one of which is the Dickson’s Golden Elm, which was previously thought to be extinct.

A statement seat was created in 2008, which now sits by the Lily Pond.

At the same time, Scarborough Council won a large grant to renovate the island and pagoda, with the park going from strength to strength.

The first Party in the Park was held in 2007, and has since become an annual summer event.

There have also been yearly carol concerts and Easter events organised by the Friends.

This year the park will celebrate its centenary with a big party on Sunday June 24 and a Shadows tribute concert the night before.

There will also be a Big Jubilee Lunch on Sunday June 3, from noon.