Launch of children’s play area this summer at Delancey Park

THE Admiral De Saumarez Trust is pleased to announce the launch of a new state-of-the-art Play Area to be installed at Delancey Park in St Sampson, Guernsey. The Admiral De Saumarez Trust is Guernsey’s first social responsibility trust funded by private individuals and corporates to regenerate island community spaces.

The much-needed Play Area will comprise three modern play spaces in the south of the Park, totalling 550 square feet with 17 pieces of fixed play equipment. The spaces are designed to be of use by three different age groups – toddlers, juniors and teenagers.  

UK specialist, Sutcliffe Play has designed the areas to include both traditional play equipment such as slides, swings and climbing frames and more natural play with equipment fitted on mounds and embankments for ‘play for plays sake’. It has been designed as much as possible to spark children’s imagination, be totally safe but include an element of perceived risk, to ensure play spaces are stimulating and challenging. The concept of ‘inclusive play’ has been included, in an invisible way, allowing all children to discover and extend their own boundaries while playing side-by-side, in multiple occupancy seats or the double width slide. This type of inclusive play equipment also allows children with physical disabilities to enjoy the Play Area, in a safe way. 

Alex Rodger, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Admiral De Saumarez Trust commented: “It has been a long time in the planning but we are delighted to be able to fund this new play area for Delancey Park. It's part of an innovative investment into our community and another step in the wider regeneration the Trust has planned for the Park. We hope parents and children alike will love playing in the new Play Area’.

Deputy Mike O'Hara, Minister of Culture and Leisure, says "The Admiral de Saumarez Trust play a major part in the rejuvenation of Delancey Park as well as other initiatives throughout the Island. Their drive and ambition will ensure that the park becomes a major focus of the community within the north of the Island to be enjoyed by generations to come. We look forward to working closely with the Trust in providing this facility".

Roy Allcock, director of Sutcliffe Play added: “Sutcliffe Play has designed and manufactured an exciting facility for children from toddlers to teens, that has also been designed to blend with the existing landscape at Delancey”.  He went on to say: “We believe that there are many other benefits that play brings to children and adults – physical health, learning, development, social cohesion, even regeneration within communities”.

The items of equipment are a mound pull-up rope, toddler basket swings, two-tier Toddlerzone boat climber with ramp, slide and sails, a three-seater merry-go-round, spring crocodile, three-seater spring rocker for toddler age group. For the independent child, the Play Area will site an Aktivzone circuit with climbing frame with nets and poles, inclusive-play nest swing, inclusive-play 1.2 m double width slide, standing Springie see-saw, rock spinner, multiple occupancy spinning dish, and a further climbing combination frame with nets, hoops, ropes and a slide.        

The teen area has been scoped to provide Guernsey granite boulder seating, curvy seats, teen benches, wipe out balance board, tree trunks and sensory planting for a more social space.

Members of the Parent–Teacher’s Association from nearby St Sampson's Infant's School, who will be using the park have expressed their delight at the news. Sarah Parsons, PTA representative commented: “As a parent of two young children, and a regular user of Delancey Park, I have a keen interest in following the regeneration if the area. There is a good variety of play equipment for different age groups and we look forward to using it.” Audrey Kenneally PTA chairperson added: “It was good to be consulted as the school has very close links with Delancey Park and use it for a variety of activities during the year”.

A local Guernsey supplier will conduct the landscaping prior to and during the installation phase.

The on-going maintenance of this community investment is also an important in the regeneration project. On installation, the Play Area will be owned by the States of Guernsey and under the terms of the lease from St Sampsons Parish, the Culture and Leisure will be responsible for maintaining the equipment.

The £120,000 project is funded in the majority by the Admiral De Saumarez Trust’s sponsors, who include many Guernsey corporates, as well as private individuals. £5,000 of this project has also been donated by The Guernsey Association of Charities Christmas lottery.

Plans for the Play Area site and equipment to be installed have been approved by States of Guernsey Planning Committee and work is due to commence week commencing 11 June 2012. It is expected that the Play Area will be completed and opened in July, being ready for the school holidays.

In the coming weeks the Trust also expects to announce the installation of adult fitness equipment so that the play areas will provide enjoyment for all ages and ability.

Read this story on the BBC website.