Councillor
Peter J. Martin
transparency, accountability and effective representation

Groomsport - Councillor Peter J. Martin

DUP representatives welcome forward progress in play provision

Tuesday 7th January 2014

This month we are being presented with the report of the Councils independently commissioned study on play provision within the Borough. We initially raised the issue of play parks in May of 2013 because of representations from residents in North Down. We believe it is crucial to ensure that appropriate play provision is in place for all of our children in North Down. Initially we highlighted the need in the Ashbury/Kilmaine/Bexley area and identified the area in front of the Ashbury shops as a possible location.

This month we are being presented with the report of the Councils independently commissioned study on play provision within the Borough. We initially raised the issue of play parks in May of 2013 because of representations from residents in North Down. We believe it is crucial to ensure that appropriate play provision is in place for all of our children in North Down. Initially we highlighted the need in the Ashbury/Kilmaine/Bexley area and identified the area in front of the Ashbury shops as a possible location. 

The report has identified a couple of areas which are regarded ‘cold spots’ in terms of provision and, as we anticipated, Ashbury and Kilmaine were top of the list with a catchment of 2632 [0–14 year olds] not adequately serviced with play provision. 

What we need to do now is to ensure there is the community desire to have a new Playpark situated in this area. Therefore we are now asking Officers to take this work to the next level and undertake a full consultation with residents. There are two possibilities for this particular play park, either in the green area in front of Ashbury Shops or in Linear Park. It is crucial that the concept has full local engagement from those living in situ to the play park. 

This must also be done within rigorous financial constraints. But over the next three years we have also secured a programme of refurbishment and updating across all the play parks in the Borough. This amounts to a substantial figure of £660,000 over the next three years. These are great successes for those with young families and we are committed to continuing to work hard representing these young families. 

Cllr Peter Martin 

“I’m thrilled that by raising this issue through Council last year we are now seeing real results. We have secured a prioritised refurbishment programme for current play parks and subject to Council agreement and budgets hopefully new provision in at least one of the newly identified areas.

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