Tuesday, 22 April 2014
Where will the Children Play?
A year or so ago councillor Simon Moores asked what residents would like to see on the old putting green site adjacent to the St Mildred's Bay car park. He very kindly arranged for the removal of the fencing on one side to allow access to the public. The site has been maintained as a green but apart from use by dog walkers nothing else has happened.
There is a problem in Westgate as there is a lack of play areas for children and toddlers. I understand that the national standard is 0.7 hectares per 1000 population. So it would appear that this part of Westgate and Westbrook is woefully inadequate in terms of play provision. The nearest is on the Lymington Road estate which is at a considerable distance away certainly beyond the walking distance of a toddler or young child.
Therefore the suggestion is that some play provision should be provided on this site. Oh I hear cries of health and safety and ROSP approval as well as funding. When so many experts are employed by our council surely these hurdles could be overcome. Surely a play area has to be better than a doggy toilet.
My vision is that it should have a nautical theme with maybe a play boat, a few swings and some picnic benches. This would not be expensive compared to other schemes like bulldozing skate parks.
A provision like this would bring more revenue to the car park and surrounding cafes and a very worthwhile amenity to an area that generally does not demand much from its local council. And best of all the children would have somewhere to play all the year round.
What do you think?