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Bourne Park, Ipswich

Client: Ipswich Borough Council

Cost: £170,000

Date: 01/05/2018

Genre: Community, Inclusive, landscape

A seaside theme for popular paddling pool

Bourne Park is one of Ipswich’s largest open spaces and attracts thousands of visitors each year.

The main attraction for the many generations of visiting families was the paddling pool and play area but these had become tired and in need of updating. Ipswich Borough Council also wanted to make the area more accessible to all abilities.

The Council set Sutcliffe Play an almost impossible task of transforming the play area and paddling pool into an accessible destination playground in just eight weeks.

Sutcliffe Play created 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.

These units are joined by two of our most popular characters which are loved by children and adults alike – Pablo the Penguin Seesaw and Wilbur the Whale Springie.

The playground also features an inclusive roundabout and three sets of swings which includes two inclusive options.

The playground is completed by colourful wetpour graphics to engage children in a trail around the playground. The three 3D graphics of a shark, turtle and starfish are already proving very popular with local families!

“Sutcliffe Play was able to design and manufacture everything we needed to meet the very tight deadlines we had set ourselves. The enthusiasm and experience of the Sutcliffe Play team helped turned the vision into a reality.

“We are all delighted with the new Bourne Beach facility and know that the community will benefit from this major investment for many years to come.”

Nigel Campbell, Park Manager

Playground Equipment:

The Castle



Inclusive Dish Roundabout

One of our most inclusive products, our rotating dish roundabout can be used for very fast dynamic play. The rocking and rotating motion with good body support and security given by the dish shape, make our dishes accessible to all. The angle of the dish and its height make side transfer possible and minimise the lifting required by helpers.

Seaside and Sandcastle

This unit features a different coastal theme on either 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.

The unit has a central tower that rises to 1.2m high and is designed to accommodate various accesses. Beach hut panels create an upper level playhouse on one side and a giant sandcastle on the other. The unit has a slide on one side, with an inclusive climbing ramp, complete with side transfer platform fits in to the other.

Boat Climber

A subtle boat theme encourages imaginative games with a number of ‘sailing’ activities to enable co-operation and social interaction. A subtle boat theme with a number of ‘sailing’ activities encourages imaginative play and allows children to develop their co-operation and social interaction skills.

Pablo the Penguin Seesaw

Pablo the Penguin uses the inspiration of the seaside & the arctic tundra. An instantly recognisable image that all children are familiar with!

Wilbur Whale Springie

Wilbur Whale is an instantly recognisable image that all children are familiar with a tail, fin and a cheeky grin!

Musical Chairs

Two low decks create a stage for children to make a range of sounds. Drums and a chime post can be played and a mini megaphone adds a vocal element.

Seaside Oyster Roundabout

This seaside themed roundabout can be a fast dynamic activity for older children or used as a social meeting point. With its rocking bearing, it can provide a supportive environment for younger and less able children, where a more gentle motion can be introduced.

The roundabout configuration is designed to be used by the widest range of abilities, so children can play together in an inclusive way. The perimeter ring provides an area for wheelchair users to side transfer before sliding in to the protective bowl and help carers assist when necessary. The same perimeter can be used to sit on or walk on.


3 sets of swings: 2.4m high Swing with 1 x Inclusive Seat, 2.4m high Swing with 4 x Pod Seats and 2.4m high Swing with 2 x Bumper Seats and 1 Rubber Nest

Produced for over 20 years, Sutcliffe Play swings are a popular item of play equipment that are built to last. Requiring installation, they are very robust as they are manufactured using hot dipped galvanised steel. They are available in different heights and with various swing combinations.

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