active play

One of biggest playgrounds opens in the south of Scotland

HAGS were invited by the Scottish Borders Council to tender for part of the various proposed play park upgrades they have planned throughout the county, the first being Gala Park in Galashiels.

Inspiration for the winning design was taken from the town’s coat of arms, the Iron Age hill fort, Buckholm Tower dating back to 1582, and the arrival of the railway in 1849. As such, the new play area reflects the town’s position within the Scottish borders.

Located on the former Public Park play area, the £290,000 facility is one of the largest in the south of Scotland. It includes areas for children up to six years of age and for older children and has play equipment not available elsewhere in Scotland.

The play space has two play zones. The junior area boasts the specially designed Galashiels tower unit, alongside equipment such as the Viper, Titan and DNA to create a challenging and exciting environment for all to enjoy, while the toddlers area features a fully accessible train climbing unit with a train track running through the site.

Galashiels play park was jointly funded by Scottish Borders Council play parks budget, Galashiels Pay and Display car parking fund surpluses and a £10,000 grant from Tesco’s Bags of Help scheme.

Seaside theme refreshes tired Ipswich playground

BOURNE Park is one of the largest open spaces in Ipswich. The park attracts thousands of visitors each year but the main attraction for families was the paddling pool, which had become tired and in need of updating. Ipswich Borough Council challenged

Sutcliffe Play to transform the play area and paddling pool into an accessible destination playground in eight weeks. The new £250,000 playground features a

seaside themed design to bring the playground’s popular paddling pool to life. Three colourful multi-play units form the

focal point of the playground and each feature inclusive elements to ensure children of all abilities can play together. • Seaside & Sandcastle features a different theme on each side. Entry to the seascape is through a giant lifebuoy set in the middle of the ocean, emerging on to the beach at the other side. With a beach hut in traditional red and white stripes, binoculars, bucket and spade graphics, swimming fish and a spinning starfish, which glide along an undulating slot to add moving tactile elements, the unit provides endless play opportunities to inspire children’s imaginations.

• The Castle sets the scene for imaginative play opportunities. With lots of activities there are many ways to get to the top of the unit to reach the wide slide. Shuffle decks enable movement around the unit, with suspension bridges and a tunnel adding to the challenge.

• The Boat Climber has a subtle boat theme with a number of ‘sailing’ activities that encourages imaginative play and allows


children to develop their co-operation and social interaction skills. The playground also features springies, a

roundabout and three sets of swings which include two inclusive options. Colourful wetpour graphics engage children in a trail around the playground, complemented by 3D graphics.

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