Falkirk Community Trust appointed Sutcliffe Play Scotland to manage the redevelopment of the Callendar Park play area, after a thorough consultation process and visits to other projects completed by the company in Falkirk. After 25 years of being a much loved and used play area, the main multi-play unit had reached the end of its lifespan and needed to be replaced, prompting a long-awaited renovation of the site.
The new play area was to be Roman themed to tie into the town’s rich heritage and the ‘Rediscovering of the Antonine Wall Project’. Its refurbishment is the first of five projects taking place as part of the project, which spans five local authorities and promotes the wall’s fascinating history and its status as part of a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Falkirk Community Trust secured funding to create a new play area through support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Falkirk Environment Trust, Kelvin Valley and Falkirk (KVF) LEADER, Falkirk Council/Falkirk Community Trust and public crowdfunding donations.
At the centre of the new play area, in what was once a barren, under-used part of the site, history has been brought to life with a 4.5 metre high Roman fort, designed to reflect the style of building the Romans used in Scotland.
Modern-day additions to the site provide exciting play opportunities for children of all ages and abilities.
An inclusive seated roundabout – both functional and fun – accommodates a wheelchair and four seated users, ensuring children can all play together. Stepping pods connect different zones of the new play area, installed at varying heights to present a challenge to children as they develop their balance and co-ordination skills. A cone climber offers a challenge and sense of achievement as they make their way to the top, developing their co-ordination, strength and confidence, whilst playing at heights at relatively low risk.
A series of round trampolines, incorporated into the colourful floor graphics, are perfect for physical play and developing coordination. The small single trampolines have been installed in a line, encouraging social play. The scheme also incorporates a Roman horse springie, play panels and Roman centurion sculptures. Information boards about the Antonine Wall complete the new play area.
“Callendar Park is a much loved park in the heart of Falkirk and we’re delighted with the transformation. We are proud to be able to reflect the town’s rich Roman heritage, and educate the next generation about the fascinating history of the Antonine Wall through play.”
Claire Mennim, Team Leader Parks & Sustainability, Falkirk Community Trust