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The Welney Website

Children's play equipment
at Welney Playing Field

Page created April 2006, amended/updated Tuesday, 13 November 2012
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Report by the Webmaster, Apr 2006
No action by Council on replacement of dirty and neglected equipment

The play equipment that was once the pride of the Playing Field Management Committee, and a joy to several generations of Welney children, sadly fell into a rather neglected state some years ago. There had been some vandalism but it was mainly a lack of maintenance due to a shortage of funds and volunteers to do the work. The area was also damp because it was in the shadow of nearby high trees, and it became overgrown. The problems were discussed many times by the Playing Field Management Committees and by the Parish Council.

In November 2003, at a meeting of the Parish Council, the equipment was declared unsafe and it was agreed that the equipment would be fenced off until it could be removed (by two councilors with their farm machinery) and the ground made good.

In April 2004 the Welney Playing Field Committee held its AGM and elected a new Committee for the following year. Among other items discussed was, again, the matter of the play equipment. It was agreed that the equipment should be moved because bird droppings created a health hazard and the toy train would be repainted to give under-fives something to play on.

In November 2004 the Parish Council received nearly £4,000 from the Gala 2004 Committee specifically to help provide new play equipment at the Playing Field.

In March 2005 the Flagship Housing Group, developers of the new social housing alongside the Lamb & Flag pub car-park, advised Council that a condition of their planning permission was to include a small play area for children up to age 6 with a piece of play equipment and a seat, and they wished to gift that to the Parish. After discussion, the Council turned down the offer as they "already had a playing field which included play equipment". It seems the Council had overlooked the fact that their play equipment was declared un-safe only 17 months earlier.

In April 2006 the old equipment was still in place as can be seen from the following photos; and there was no sign of the fencing promised by the Council in Nov 2003.
toy train swing tyop swing seat
Above: toy train looks sound, but overgrown; swing top held together by wire coathanger; swing seat covered in bird droppings.
Below: the climbing frame appears basically sound, but needs new netting and a repair to a rotten cross member (right)
rotten cross member on climbing frame rotten cross member on climbing frame
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textand photos © Peter Cox.

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Update, May 2006:
When questioned during public participation at a Council meeting in spring 2006 the chairman admitted that the Council had not applied for any further funding, and said it would not buy any new equipment until the site of their new Community Hall was decided.

Update, Sept 2006:
The Parish Council chairman has removed & disposed of all the play equipment, and levelled the site.
Related pages on this website
Oct 2004 Gala Funds for new equip
Apr 06 Dilapadated equip (this page)
Sep 06 WWPC chairman clears site
Related pages on external websites
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