Tuesday, 17 July 2018

Children treated to new playground

DOZENS of children and parents attended the official opening of a new children’s play area in Stoke Row.

DOZENS of children and parents attended the official opening of a new children’s play area in Stoke Row.

The £48,000 facility at Cherry Orchard, off Cox’s Lane, was installed by contractor Playdale over the summer.

It replaces the old equipment, including some swings, a slide and a zip wire, which was about 10 years old and nearing the end of its useful life.

Some of the pieces had been fenced off after inspectors deemed them unsafe.

The new equipment, which is suitable for a range of ages, is spread across six stations and includes swings, cargo netting, a miniature climbing wall, swings, wobbly walkways on springs and a slide.

The playground, which opened to the public about a month ago, is covered by wood chippings as a safety measure and surrounded by a fence with gates.

The installation was overseen by Stoke Row Parish Council, which put about £10,000 towards the cost and secured a £29,000 community grant from South Oxfordshire District Council. The rest of the money came from private donations and fund-raising events. Supporters included the Maharajah’s Well Trust, which owns the land. The opening ceremony was attended by district council chairman Paul Harrison and parish council chairman Julian Kennedy.

Parish councillor Tracey Preedy, who led the fund-raising efforts, was presented with a bouquet of flowers.

Afterwards children enjoyed picnics with their families and were given balloons.

Councillor Kennedy said: “The old playground had been there for some time and, as is always the case, these things start to get run down. It had reached the stage where the swings were moving all over the place and we needed to think about replacement.

“The discussions started about three years ago and we had to get quotes from manufacturers and look for funding wherever we could get it.

“It’s a fantastic resource for the village now. Every time I take my children there are lots of others enjoying it.

“It’s a great place to come to after school and has become well-used since the contractors completed it. We’re getting a lot of positive feedback.

“We’re all very grateful to Tracey for her hard work in getting this off the ground.”

Cllr Harrison said: “We are glad to have been able to support this project as it is an excellent play area that fits in very well with the site.”

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