TWO new seats have been dedicated in a Darlington park to commemorate the Queen's Golden Jubilee.

The money to buy the seats was raised by the Friends of Stanhope Park, through membership subscriptions, sales of Christmas cards and events such as a Christmas dance.

The group was started four years ago after vandals pulled up all the summer bedding plants which had been planted by Darlington Borough Council the previous day.

Local children and residents decided to replant them and from that day decided to try to reverse the decline in the park and its facilities.

A spokeswoman for the group said: "Stanhope Park is the most well used of all of Darlington's small parks.

"It is used by commuters and shoppers on their way to town, by students of the sixth form and technical college, and by residents of adjacent care homes.

"It is also used by toddlers from local nursery groups, art centre visitors and local residents and is therefore under enormous pressures."

The friends aim to cater for all of these groups and have identified sites for up to 20 seats around the perimeter paths, additional tree planting and flower borders.