by Steve Peacock
Playtime is about to be come a £95,000 adventure for Bridgetown youngsters.
Work is due to start next week on building a new nature-based play area in Parkers Way which will incorporate part of the stream that runs through the heart of Bridgetown in to an adventure playground.
The new play space will include wooden structures, play landscapes and wildlife habitats and will use innovative natural systems to manage the drainage making more of the area available for play and exploration.
In the spring of 2016 local charity Bridgetown Alive! undertook consultations with local residents, including children over the playspace.
Bridgetown Alive! chairman Richard Mitchell said: “Our wish was to create a place for imaginative and creative play, using the natural features of the area – eg the stream – as much as possible.”
The £95,000 it is costing has come from the South Hams Council held Section 106 money which is shelled out by developers to mitigate the impact of new housing developments on local communities.
The work is due to start on Monday, April 24, and take about a month to complete.
The Dartington-based Earth Wrights Ltd – which recently completed the new play area in Leechwell Garden – has been given the job of designing and building the new play space.
Mr Mitchell said: “Earth Wrights has a great and local reputation and we are delighted that they have been selected to build the playpark.”
The play project will include area for younger children which will involve a play tower with a climbing ramp and slide, living willow tunnels, balancing log bridges and grassy mounds.
Older children will be able to enjoy climbing up to the hill-top look out tower via a web of ropes and traversing the log agility structure co-designed with local parkour teacher Kyle Perkins from Parkour Adventures.
Earth Wrights has incorporated sheltered seating areas throughout the play space and are using sustainable drainage systems and targeted planting schemes to develop a flower-rich marsh, which will enhance the areas natural features and increase biodiversity.
Children will be able to access the nearby stream via a shingle beach with boulders.
Earth Wrights director Mike Jones said: “Creating spaces that invite local wildlife is an important part of our ethos.”