An exciting redevelopment of the children’s playground in Courage Park is underway, with a wide range of engaging and accessible equipment for local children of varying ages being installed this month. The work forms part of Reading Borough Council’s regeneration of the area.
Closed since mid-December to allow work to begin, the park’s old play equipment has been removed to make way for a host of new play items to be constructed, which it is hoped will be available to the local community next month.
Residents were invited in the summer to have their say on the Council’s £116,200 investment in the park. Three proposals for the new area were put to a public consultation, with their votes taken into account along with value for money, technical scores and recommendations from the Access and Disability Working Group.
As part of a push for better value for money, the Council also negotiated an additional obstacle course to go along with the new proposed play scheme for Courage Park within the original budget.
Designed to appeal to older children, the extra obstacle course will include a climbing wall/net, overhead ladder with steps, balance beam, over and under bars and step pods. This will complement the new equipment coming in the form of a main multiplay unit featuring two slides, fireman’s pole and a bridge, three-way see-saw, trampoline, swings and roundabout. The equipment is designed to be inclusive.
The investment will also improve access to the park as part of a wider plan to enhance the Wensley Road Estate and its surroundings for those who live there.
Cllr Ellie Emberson, Reading’s Lead Member for Housing, said:
“I know residents across Coley are really excited for the playground to open. The imminent opening of the new Courage Park playground is just the start with development work continuing at Wensley Road. Coming soon will also be a new play area for smaller children on the estate, new windows and communal entrances for our tenants in the blocks, and new homes to allow our growing families to move within the estate”.
Cllr Karen Rowland, Reading’s Lead Member for Culture, Heritage and Recreation, said:
“2021 saw Reading Borough Council invest widely in parks and playgrounds across the borough and it is exciting that 2022 has begun in the same way. Positive open spaces and play areas are key elements for healthy and well-integrated communities and these plans form the bedrock of the exciting future planned for the area’s enhancement. Furthermore, it is one of our key priorities to provide high quality, accessible equipment in as many of our playgrounds as possible so that children of all abilities can play together and the Courage Park enhancements will help us achieve our goal on this”.