At Chatsworth – one of the country’s premier visitor attractions – the Farmyard and Adventure Playground is run as a separate attraction with additional admission charge. The Farmyard is a working farm and the original timber adventure playground was built in the 1980’s. Popularity grew with so many visitors returning to the Farmyard and Play Area without necessarily visiting the house, that the management decided to invest in a number of new attractions for children.
The requirement was to replace the original timber one, that would sit alongside the popular working Farmyard attraction built in the 1980’s. Low maintenance and durability were of key importance as well as activities that children would find rewarding, exciting and stimulating
Consideration to the play area fitting into the natural environment was of up most importance. Our equipment was chosen in the first place because it satisfied all the requirements for a playground – exciting & stimulating with tremendous play values – but also sympathetic to the woodland location.
Inspiration was taken from the immediate landscape and the famous water features associated with Chatsworth which were reflected in a series of water play elements. Divided into two main areas, a design for younger children incorporates sand, water, mini trampolines and a range of moving and agility systems. A junior area takes children into the tree canopy via bridges, nets & tunnels centred around an outdoor trampoline unit.
Dalben towers rising up to 10.5m high, with spirals returning children to the ground, are used with lower towers allowing children to traverse the whole site without touching the ground.
The addition of a beautiful, well-made all-year-round attraction has allowed Chatsworth to bolster visitor numbers despite set-backs. Low maintenance and durable, the equipment has contributed significantly to the revenue generated by the house – which now closes only between December and March each year. That extra seven weeks in the build up to Christmas contributes almost a quarter of their entire tourism business.
Chatsworth have been delighted with the impact and success of the playground. Over the last three years the number of visitors to The Farmyard and The Adventure Playground has just grown and grown. The equipment still looks attractive after seven years and more than 1 million visitors. It retains its play appeal for the children, who keep coming back and it only needs routine maintenance to keep it fresh.