Anger as Fence play area ripped up

The ripped up playground in Old Laund Street, Fence

The ripped up playground in Old Laund Street, Fence

First published in News Burnley and Pendle Citizen: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

A POPULAR children’s playground that was due to be upgraded has been demolished, despite there not being enough funds to replace it yet.

The playground in Old Laund Street, Fence, was widely used by children in the area and a fundraising committee was set up 18 months ago to replace some of the aging equipment.

They needed to raise £74,000 for the modernised playground, but so far had only raised between £15,000 and £17,000.

However, on Thursday a sign was attached to the playground gate that read ‘This playground is closed until further notice.’ By Saturday, diggers were ripping up the playground, but there is no plan to immediately replace it, says an angry resident.

Kimberley Holgate, who lives in Old Laund Street, said she and her neighbours were not consulted about the decision and that her two children are devastated. She said: “They have ripped it up at the start of the school holidays and there’s nowhere else for children to play here.

“Nobody told us this was going to happen and there was nothing wrong with the park. All the children round here loved it.

“We went to a meeting last night about it, but all the parish councillors just said ‘it’s happened now, it’s history, get over it’, but it doesn’t make sense.

“It’s an eyesore now and they are just planning to fill it in with hardcore and leave it. It’s outrageous.”

Rebecca Hay, clerk to Old Laund Booth Parish Council, said: “The play area is on land leased to the parish council by Lancashire County Council. Every year we are obliged to have an inspection of the play equipment to ensure it is safe. For the last few years, inspections have left us replacing pieces of equipment because they do not meet safety standards.”

Mrs Hay said that the play area was no longer allowed to be used, but when asked if this was due to it not meeting safety standards, she said: “It was just costing us to replace bits all the time and I think we just realised it wasn’t worth it.”

Mrs Hay said residents were made aware of the decision to start groundworks via the Village Directory newsletter.

The fundraising committee, which is a separate body to the parish council, hopes to continue to raise funds to replace the park.

Comments (3)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

3:07pm Wed 6 Aug 14

fubarbundy says...

Seems they have a Parish council with ideas above their station. Represent the people and the area, protect and serve should be their remit!
No regard for residents or the children who have used this park for well over 40 + Years.
This seems as if it has been rushed through to avoid any conflict before action.
Maybe it will take some child being injured on a road somewhere , for people to act - because they have taken away their park and this will lead to idle and bored children!

Shame on the Parish leaders!
Seems they have a Parish council with ideas above their station. Represent the people and the area, protect and serve should be their remit! No regard for residents or the children who have used this park for well over 40 + Years. This seems as if it has been rushed through to avoid any conflict before action. Maybe it will take some child being injured on a road somewhere , for people to act - because they have taken away their park and this will lead to idle and bored children! Shame on the Parish leaders! fubarbundy
  • Score: 17

10:38pm Sun 10 Aug 14

Pendlesider says...

wouldn't have happened if john david was still a councillor.
.
sad to see the parish council didn't have the children's interests at heart.
why demolish a modernised playground?
the equipment was 'ageing' (not aging).
wouldn't have happened if john david was still a councillor. . sad to see the parish council didn't have the children's interests at heart. why demolish a modernised playground? the equipment was 'ageing' (not aging). Pendlesider
  • Score: 2

9:49am Wed 13 Aug 14

globetrot says...

Send Andrew Stephenson in.
Send Andrew Stephenson in. globetrot
  • Score: 2

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree