RESIDENTS, businesses and community organisations voiced ideas for how Pitsea should spend £1million of Lottery cash at a community event.

The community had the chance to suggest ways to spend the “Big Local” grant at Basildon Upper Academy on Saturday.

Sue Houghton, a member of the Heart of Pitsea team, a community group running the consultation on how the 10-year grant should be spent, said: “We have had some very valuable feedback from the community. It’s encouraging.”

Basildon Council officers worked with visitors using internet mapping service Google Streetview to locate and jot down areas of central Pitsea they wanted improving.

Visitors could also note ideas on cardboard baubles to hang on a Christmas tree.

Education firm Kip McGrath, radio station Gateway, Rethink Mental Illness and St Gabriel’s Church were among local businesses, charities and community organisations holding stalls with information about their services at the school in Wickford Avenue.

They are also suggesting ways the regeneration money should be spent.

Breggie Rautenbach, director of Kip McGrath, said: “I’d like to see the community get together and work together. Parents and the older generation want to help, but we need to get the younger generation involved.

“The money needs to be spent in a way that has a lasting effect.”

Rev Simon Law, rector of St Gabriel’s Church, suggested some was spent celebrating the 50th anniversary of the church’s move to the heart of Pitsea next year.

He said: “We could have an exhibition of what has happened and what services we offer the community.”

The church runs a club for young people aged 10 to 16 at its hall in Rectory Road on Fridays from 6pm to 7.30pm.

Children also enjoyed a bouncy castle and face painting at the eight-hour engagement event on Saturday.

Heart of Pitsea will now go out to clubs and groups to ask members how the money should be spent.

The team will also use social networking to engage people.

To have your say email or call 07572001671.