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Village Playground to be Closed ( was Stafford Mount)

 
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Rhodie



Joined: 14 Sep 2005

Posts: 425
Location: Rhode Hill, Uplyme

PostPosted: 12/01/06, 09:21    Post subject: Village Playground to be Closed ( was Stafford Mount) Reply with quote

The fait of the existing play facilities was finally decided at the January meeting of the parish council last night. According to a report referred to by the vice-chairman Jonathan Clarke-Irons each of the items on the playground represents a safety problem above the inherent ones associated with such dangerous equipment as swings, roundabouts and climbing frames. He said that play items are given a score on a scale from one to five representing the degree of danger, one being that a slight danger exists to five where there is a danger of death. No item was completely in the clear and even category five was given to at least one item.

It was again raised as to what the councilís position would now be if, having been made aware of and having discussed the dangers of the equipment, an accident would take place injuring a child. It was decided that if such an accident did take place the councilís position would be indefensible. Therefore perhaps reluctantly it was decided to close the playground. A notice will be placed at the playground explaining this move and also a full explanation will appear in the next edition of the parish magazine. Perhaps we will also see the same statement posted on the official parish website.

It is planned that after the closing of the playground and when time and resources permit the equipment will be removed and the area will then be opened as a play area. Whether or not new equipment will eventually be installed will depend on raising the current cost of about £60,000. The fund presently stands at a little over £2,000.

The view was expressed that the current Health and Safety regulations and the cost of furnishing a playground were now putting the furnishing and the running of such a facility out of reach for the parish council. The equipment failed not solely on some of the items dilapidated condition but that the original designs do not now come up to present standards. The regulations regarding such equipment having moved on. Which begs the question, with the continuing power of the nanny state, how long would it be before newly installed and conforming equipment was left behind by ever evolving stringent regulations Question
Will the parish council be then in the same position in six or seven years after refurbishing the playground Question
Has the time arrived for the parish council to abandon the provision of play equipment Question
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oliver



Joined: 14 Sep 2005

Posts: 117

PostPosted: 12/01/06, 19:22    Post subject: Reply with quote

is it satying permanently closed?
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Rhodie



Joined: 14 Sep 2005

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Location: Rhode Hill, Uplyme

PostPosted: 13/01/06, 07:13    Post subject: Reply with quote

At least until all the equipment has been removed. New equipment will then be added when funds allow but don't hold your breath Sad
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geoff



Joined: 17 Sep 2005

Posts: 705
Location: Lyme Rd, Uplyme

PostPosted: 13/01/06, 10:56    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nanny state ? You won't be able to breathe soon without a government license and full training updated yearly.

So now the kids of the village, who up to now have had very little provided for their amusement, have nothing at all. Well don't be surprised when they all weigh 100kg, have type II diabetes, and talk like characters from 'Friends'.

As to the replacement costs running to 60 thousand pounds - I am yet to be convinced that an effective purchasing exercise had been carried out to find the best value.

About 2mins on the web found me Wicksteed Leisure, a long standing play equipment manufacturer whose products are all tested and certified to EN 1176/7. A 5min phone call revealed that a 4-swing unit, a 'spirowhirl' roundabout and a medium sized pedestal slide would cost about 8 grand plus VAT delivered and installed. Special safety surfacing would be up to an incredible 10 grand delivered and installed. Preparation of the area would require a digger for a couple of days and say 2500 of materials. I make it about 20 grand tops. Can anyone tell me what is the other 40 grand for ?

G.

Wicksteed Leisure
web: http://www.wicksteed.co.uk
phone: 01536 517028
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Rhodie



Joined: 14 Sep 2005

Posts: 425
Location: Rhode Hill, Uplyme

PostPosted: 15/01/06, 07:15    Post subject: Reply with quote

It was quoted at Wednesdayís meeting that a single roundabout, the play item that local children in a poll said was a must have item, would be £8,000 alone.

I think Geoff should be given the job of refurbishing the playground and be allowed to keep the change from £25,000
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geoff



Joined: 17 Sep 2005

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Location: Lyme Rd, Uplyme

PostPosted: 16/01/06, 08:49    Post subject: Reply with quote



The above roundabout costs 3186.00 delivered and fitted. It requires 2300 worth of 'safety play surface'. Total of 5486.

I am pretty confident that when the Parish Council complete the purchasing process (and presumably get competitive quotes for the work ?), they will find that their original estimates are excessive.

G.
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rose



Joined: 17 Jan 2006

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Location: Raymonds Hill

PostPosted: 17/01/06, 10:21    Post subject: Reply with quote

What a sad state of affairs - my own children enjoyed the playground and now my grandchildren will be denied this opportunity. All power to Geoff for sourcing possible replacement equipment - I hope a large article will appear in the Parish News, which gets distributed widely (even to remotest Raymonds Hill) - we should all know about this and a campaign should be started to raise money/awareness and to prompt applictions to the Lottery for funding....esp. in view of current emphasis on children taking more exercise and fresh air.......ITS A SCANDAL.....get the local press and TV involved.....
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Geoff Willett



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Location: Uplyme

PostPosted: 01/02/06, 21:16    Post subject: Playground Reply with quote

I had a look at the equipment from outside the fence, so this is only comments from a distance:
1. The kit does not look rotten or look like its about to collapse.
2. What stress tests have been done.
3. What is the cost of repair.
4. £68k for replacement is not acceptable, what are the other options and how can best value be achieved.

GW
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Rhodie



Joined: 14 Sep 2005

Posts: 425
Location: Rhode Hill, Uplyme

PostPosted: 04/02/06, 10:12    Post subject: Re: Playground Reply with quote

Geoff Willett wrote:
I had a look at the equipment from outside the fence, so this is only comments from a distance:
1. The kit does not look rotten or look like its about to collapse.
GW


I donít know what the state of decay is but it seems that the prime concern of the parish council is that if the present equipment was now being installed then it would not meet the minimum safety requirements that playground equipment must attain. I believe there to be a clause in the insurance policy covering the playground that the insurance is invalid if the equipment does not meet the current safety standards.

This is doubly depressing when one considers that this equipment is probably no more than about twelve years old, the safety standards having moved on so fast. Can we now be confident that the nanny state will not continue to attempt to make life completely risk free, un-adventurous and dull Question Sad

How long would it be before any new equipment fails to meet the ever stringent safety standards Question

It would be useful if a member of the parish council could clear up some of the points raised in this thread. You canít escape the begging bowls asking parishioners to contribute towards the cost of refurbishment of the playground. The parish council website has a page on the Playground,

www.uplymeparishcouncil.org/playground.html

but half of the space there refers to how you can contribute to the £65,000 target.

On the Today programme this morning it was said that council workers are not permitted to use a ladder to change bulbs in street lighting fittings and because towers cannot be used, due to difficult access, the lights remain out. It does not seem to occur to them that no lighting also incurs certain dangers
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Rhodie



Joined: 14 Sep 2005

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Location: Rhode Hill, Uplyme

PostPosted: 08/02/06, 07:29    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have just heard on the Today programme that in Finland playground equipment is now designed to be used by people of all ages. At anyone time you may see three generations using the swings, climbing frames and roundabouts. Older people interviewed said that they really enjoy using it and have become fitter and more agile and the interplay of the generations benefits the community. I did note that the people interviewed tended to be from the older generations. I wonder what the children think of granny getting in the way on the climbing frame.

Perhaps the parish council should look again at having the new equipment designed for all age use for we could see in a few years time the equipment again not coming up to new standards that allow multi-age use Cool

See BBC article on the Fins attitude to playgrounds:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/4691088.stm
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Rhodie



Joined: 14 Sep 2005

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Location: Rhode Hill, Uplyme

PostPosted: 10/02/06, 07:58    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jonathan Clarke-Irons continues to work hard in his quest for funds for new equipment. He now has raised £7,000 and has applied for grants and funding for a total of £40,000.

For a chance of winning train journeys up to the value of £382.40 go to:

www.uplyme.freeserve.co.uk/playground/swtrains.jpg
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geoff



Joined: 17 Sep 2005

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Location: Lyme Rd, Uplyme

PostPosted: 20/02/06, 10:25    Post subject: Reply with quote

Uplyme.com now has a page dedicated to the appeal for the refurbishment at http://www.uplyme.com/playground_appeal.htm

There is a link on the page to allow you to see the original estimate for the replacement equipment.
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scott



Joined: 17 Sep 2005

Posts: 65
Location: yawl

PostPosted: 22/02/06, 13:15    Post subject: Faceless Bureaucracy Reply with quote

Arriving late to this debate (I've been away....) it seems we are once again the subject, not so much of legislation as the fear of litigation. Can we actually entrust the provision of services like this to a public body that have so many criteria they value above providing the service to the public?

When the main drivers arel iability and money, the chosen course of action makes perfect sense. If the imperative was service provision then the action has been precipitive. and the apparent 'begging' approach difficult to defend.

The £60,000 touted is a smoke screen to cover inaction and lack of decision making.

This is a project that should be approached in stages, the first being what we (the village) want from the area, followed by a staged plan with incremental money requirements.

To shoot for the whole in one go is both demoralising and unrealistic.

All of this may be obvious but I am just catching up.

Who owns this project?
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Rhodie



Joined: 14 Sep 2005

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Location: Rhode Hill, Uplyme

PostPosted: 10/08/06, 19:58    Post subject: Reply with quote

Although you would not know it by reading the Playground page on the parish council website the Uplyme Playground with the first tranche of new equipment was re-opened on the day of the Fete. A multi-activity installation is now planned. One of the items will be a Ďfiremanís poleí. Only last week a planned fire station was banned from having one of these because of the danger inherent in such a device. The firemen will have to use the stairs instead.
Are we now submitting our children to dangers that we will not allow firemen to face Question
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