A SCOUT group providing children with skills for life has been awarded £2,500 on behalf of the Gannett Foundation.

The money will help the 21st Warrington West (Appleton) Scouts build an access ramp to their scout hall in Dudlow Green Road.

The fund is run by Gannett, owner of Newsquest Media Group, which publishes the Warrington Guardian.

Over the past ten years alone, it has given away nearly £4 million to help community causes.

Alexander Green, a parent committee member at the scout group, said the Appleton scout hall is not accessible to those in wheelchairs or with reduced mobility.

He explained: "Currently, the main pedestrian access is down three steps and across an uneven floor.

"Our project is to remove these steps and replace them with a ramp that meets current disability access regulations to ensure that people with restricted mobility can access the scout hall and any activities therein."

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The scout hall is used by a variety of young people, including Beavers, ages six to eight, Cubs, ages eight to 10-and-a-half and Scouts, ages 10-and-a-half to 14.

Activities are run in the hall throughout the week and its constant use is one of the reasons the access ramp was deemed necessary.

Alexander said: "Scouts help children and young adults reach their full potential.

"Scouts develop skills including teamwork, time management, leadership, initiative, planning, communication, self-motivation, cultural awareness and commitment.

"We help young people to get jobs, save lives and even change the world.

"Our official charity objective is to promote the development of young people in achieving their full physical, intellectual, social and spiritual potentials, as individuals, as responsible citizens and as members of their local, national and international communities."

Other groups also use the scout hall alongside the Scouts, such as Guides and district events.

Treasurer, Stephen Cummings, spoke about how much the grant will help the organisation become accessible to everyone.

The Co-operative Society, Appleton Parish Council, Bloor Homes and Barratt Homes have also contributed grants to help cover the costs.

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Stephen said: "It will help us be more inclusive if we have it there ready for anyone who needs it.

"It's not just for the scouts themselves, but also adult volunteers, leadership support or anyone visiting the scout hall.

"We do disability awareness training here and now the venue can really accommodate that even more."

The 21st Warrington West (Appleton) Scouts currently has a waiting list and is proving popular in the community.

This is in keeping with trends across Cheshire, with more people seeing the benefits of joining.

Over the past 10 years, Cheshire has seen its total membership grow by 42.5 per cent.

In Warrington West there is now a total of 1,460 members, with 14,396 members across the county.

Stephen added: "The Scouts offer skills for life and it's all a great experience."