Vandalised play area brought back to life
A run down, underused and vandalised play area which has been closed for six months has been brought back to life after a refurbishment project spearheaded by a pioneering development consultancy.
Public sector development experts apT helped lead the project at the Telford site in partnership with developers Taylor Wimpey, Persimmon, Barratts, who owned the play area, and Telford & Wrekin Council.
The council has now agreed to adopt and maintain the refurbished facility at Lawley following the work, which was funded by the developers.
Healthy Spaces Design Specialist Derek Owen, of Telford-based apT, said the refurbished site was already proving a big hit with local youngsters.
The first challenge had been to open up the play area so that it was less prone to vandalism and felt safer for the youngsters using it, he said.
“The play area was isolated from any views from nearby residents or roads so there was no natural surveillance of the site,” Derek said.
The council was also concerned about ongoing safety issues and wanted to minimise any ongoing maintenance costs if it was to adopt the facility.
Derek said the main safety concern at the site had been the surface, which was painted in a range of colours and was shrinking every year, creating trip hazards which had caused regular closures.
The site had now been resurfaced in one colour meaning any future shrinkage would be at the edges and not create a trip hazard.
Community consultation carried out by Telford & Wrekin Council in partnership with Lawley & Overdale Parish Council and Bournville Village Trust involved working with local residents.
The Mayor of the Borough of Telford & Wrekin, Councillor Raj Mehta said: “Telford & Wrekin Council is delighted to have worked with apT to refurbish these new facilities in Lawley.
“Their expertise in children’s play area provision is second to none. It is a joy to see everyone together and enjoying what has been provided for the local community. The play facilities here are part of our commitment to encourage Telford & Wrekin residents to choose to lead more physically and socially active lives – to do more, enjoy more, feel better. What a great facility for the local community.”
The play area will now be maintained by Telford & Wrekin Council using maintenance funding gained from the developer.