Haydon Wick celebrates inclusive new play area designed by and for local children

By Jamie Hill - 12 February 2024


Haydon Wick Parish Council has proudly opened the newly renovated Trent Road Play Area based in Haydon Wick, North Swindon.

The expanded play space features new accessible and interactive equipment chosen by the children themselves.

Working closely with play area specialists Wicksteed, the Council invited current Year 3 and Year 4 pupils from Greenmeadow Primary School and former Pupils in Year 7 at Nova Hreod Academy to envision their dream play area. The final design brought their ideas to life with imaginative elements like interactive panels, a double width slide, a basket swing, mushroom stepping stools and more, to ensure children of all abilities can enjoy the new space.

At a lively opening event, local councillors and staff gathered as the children were excited to first try out the equipment. The brightly coloured play area is more than a place to play, it represents the democratic values and community spirit that Haydon Wick Parish Council strives to achieve. Wicksteed provided some merchandise, and the Parish Council was armed with sweets and bubbles to add to the excitement of the new play space.

Some comments captured from the local children included:

“I loved the basket swing because I could go on it with my friend.”

“I loved the spinning net because you can go different speeds and take your hands off – if you’re feeling really brave.”

Greenmeadow Primary School’s Head Teacher, Kate McKinnon, was delighted that pupils were able to be present. She said: Last year, the Year 6 children at Greenmeadow Primary School were lucky enough to work with Haydon Wick Parish Council on the new design for the Trent Road Play Area.

"The children were able to review designs and give their opinions on which pieces of apparatus they felt would be popular and shared a viewpoint of how this could be inclusive and accessible for all children enjoying the facility.

"By working with the Parish Council, the School could develop the skills of sharing a viewpoint and understand democracy in action when working with the local councillors.

"This year, we have been lucky as our Year 3 and Year 4 children have been invited for the opening of the play park which we are really excited about. Having safe and exciting spaces to play locally is really important for our families and we are lucky to both be able to walk here from school and for many of our homes.“

Councillor Steve Heyes, Chair of the Play Area Working Party said: "The Council is really proud of its 24 play areas and is committed to improving these facilities, in line with the Community Led Plan’s objective, to make them inclusive and accessible.

"Working with local children and young people is a very rewarding part of this project and ensures that these play areas are future proofed for years to come, with the children from today bringing their children along in the future, like their parents are doing today.

"Play areas and open spaces are proven to be a huge part of the health and wellbeing of young people. The continued support and advice from Benjamin’s Smile Charity and Mums on a Mission is also paramount to ensure that the Council is getting the investment in the local assets right.

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