Inclusive Playground at Rosemead Park opens
On Saturday 18th December, Town Mayor Councillor David Chace was joined by Lloyd Parvin-Blackstone to officially open the new playground at the Park. A project delivered by Littlehampton Town Council and constructed by Sutcliffe Play, the new playground is based on the outcomes from public consultation and designed for children up to the age of 14 years and includes specific features to ensure that all children can fulfil their play needs irrespective of their perceived ability.
When the Town Council launched its public engagement in 2019, 10-year-old Lloyd, who has autism, wrote to the Council expressing his desire for a playground where everyone could play with a slide, a swing and sensory thing that everyone could use, even in a wheelchair. Lloyd added: “I think parks should be for everyone, the disabled and abled. We like playing together.”
The Council worked hard to incorporate Lloyd’s views, which were very much aligned with those from the survey, into the improvement plan and it managed to commission a company that could meet the brief and more. A total of £137,398 has been invested in the project, mostly from the Town Council’s Reserves. This also includes £12,000 donated by Anesco Ltd who built the Brook Barn Solar Farm in Wick. Mark Futyan, Anesco CEO, commented: "We're so pleased to have contributed towards such a valuable community asset and we're sure local families will enjoy using it for many years to come. Increasing the UK's renewable energy supply, while supporting the local communities where our projects are based, is something we remain very passionate about."
Sutcliffe Play were awarded the contract following completion of a competitive tender process and a presentation to the Town Council’s Community Resources Committee. Members were particularly impressed by their enthusiasm for the project and their willingness to adapt their design to meet the brief. Councillor engagement further contributed to additions within the playground most notably the sensory path, which further expands the offering to a wider demographic. Sutcliffe Play have continued to work with the Council to deliver a first-class inclusive play facility. Simon Preston, Area Sales Manager for Sutcliffe Play commented: “Inclusive play is our speciality, and we knew we would be able to deliver a playground with all the key features that were identified in the public consultation, and more. Seeing the vision of everyone involved become a reality is exciting and we know the playground will have a long-lasting positive impact on the community for many years to come.”
Speaking about the project, Chair of the Community Resources Committee, Councillor Billy Blanchard-Cooper said: “I am absolutely thrilled with the playground especially how Sutcliffe Play has managed to create a fun, safe and inclusive space for children of all ages and abilities. This new facility will bring much life to Rosemead Park and provide hours of fun for children and families. After the year we have had, it is nice to end it with something so positive for the whole community.”