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New play area in Ackworth, Wakefield

Client: Ackworth Parish Council

Cost: £85,000

Date: 01/06/2013

Genre: Community, Inclusive, landscape

'Tremendous' reception for new local play area

Working with Ackworth Parish Council, and close to our factory in Upton, a new £85,000 local play area in Carr Bridge includes both toddler and junior play equipment and was developed following extensive consultation with local children and residents.

Local schoolchildren were invited onto the site at the beginning of the build to help ‘mark out’ their new play area which has increased their sense of ownership of the new playground.

The playground has proved a huge success since opening.  Cllr Roy Hirst, Chair of the Playing Fields Committee, said: “You only have to look at how this space has been used since it was completed.  Children of all ages from mums and tots to young teenagers fill this place all day long.”

The new play area includes two different spaces.  The toddler area is enclosed providing added security for young families, and the junior area maximises the local environment by being positioned around an existing mound. The two areas are connected using a sleeper climbing wall.

The playground was funded following successful applications to Lafarge-Tarmac and WREN (Waste Recycling Environmental Limited, a non-profit making Environmental Body registered to fund profits which are eligible under the Landfill Communities Fund).

Peter Cox, WREN’s MD added: “WREN is committed to funding projects that make a real difference to local communities. The Carr Bridge play area has provided a fantastic opportunity for children and families to get outside, challenge themselves and have some fun.”

Steve Wells from Steve Wells Associates, a local landscape architect who managed the project on behalf of Ackworth Parish Council says: “The play area has been a tremendous addition and has received an overwhelming response from the community, there isn’t a negative point about it.”

“The day we handed the playground over to the Parish Council there were around 20-30 mums with children waiting for us to leave so they could start playing! ”

“It has added real value to the community and has encouraged the creation of the Friends of Carr Bridge Community Group.  I believe it will have a positive and lasting impact for families and children for many years to come.”

Playground Equipment:

Pod Swing Seat: These swings feature the Pod Seat, which hugs a child (like peas in a pod) and uses their body weight to pull it around them.

Back to Back Inclusive Roundabout:  This roundabout is more accessible for disabled children transferring from a wheelchair. Two back-rests and side support frames help children with poor mobility use it like a chair.

Toddlerzone Shop & Slide: Continuous rubber crawl/shuffle decks make this large unit both very inclusive and suitable for tiny toddlers. The many play panels at or near ground level – mirror, shop, abacus, puzzle and binoculars, encourage imaginative role play.

Playzone Long Climb: A transitional unit that is good for older toddlers and juniors alike. It has a challenging hand-over-hand section that acts as a filter between the easy slide end and the trickier climbing wall and fireman’s pole. It provides increasingly difficult challenges to keep children coming back. Ideal for long narrow spaces.

Stepping Pods: Stepping Pods have a rubber moulded top and can be installed at varying heights and numbers for children to hop from one to another. Great to develop balance and the skill of judging distances.

Springie Seesaw & Inclusive Buggie Springie: Imaginative, exhilarating and fun to ride. The Springie Seesaw has easy grip hand and foot holds with anti-slip ends. Ground fixed, they are easy to maintain as the spring can be easily removed from the top and bottom fixings.

Cherry Twist: A new twist on a popular theme and a contemporary design for modern playgrounds. Low in cost and compact it is ideal for small spaces and tight budgets. No safety surfacing required with a high play value for up to 3 children, incorporating a non-slip, rubber covered safety standing surfacing. A maintenance free, long life finish with sealed bearings. Fully compliant with EN1176.

Playzone Embankment Slide: Making use of the natural environment a slide is set into an embankment.

Stand Up Seesaw: This standing seesaw can be used in various ways, stand on the bottom foot rests or on the handles higher up, sit on the beam and use the handles as a perch. Younger children can also sit in the middle helped by older children either side.

Balance Beam: The Balance Beam is a rubber covered beam that mirrors walking along a tree trunk. Excellent for developing balance & co-ordination skills.

Low Rotator: A challenging three station rotator, requiring strength, balance and co-ordination. The children control the speed themselves. Centrifugal forces mean that as they lean in, the rotator goes faster, as they lean out, it slows down. It develops strength, co-ordination and balance with a social twist.

Inclusive Nest Swing: Designed to hold several young children and those with special needs, this nest swing encourages teamwork in play.


  • Bench
  • Litter bin
  • Self Closing Dog Gate
  • Sleeper & Compressed Gravel Steps
  • Up n Over Sleeper Traversing Wall

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