246 (69%) people were in favour of improving the play space facilities for a wider range of children
After extensive community consultation to identify the vision to build a new combined area of adventure trail area for teenagers and an adjacent upgraded toddler area, the new £52,000 play area funded entirely through grants and community donations was officiallly opened in Oxton on Saturday 10th September 2011.
The project, funded by Nottinghamshire County Council’s Local Improvement Scheme, WREN, NSDC, County Councillor Andy Stewart and the community who raised a fantastic £8,000 through the Playspace Appeal organised by Oxton Community Fundraisers, was in response to demand from local families for better and more up-to-date play facilities in the village.
The new facilities are situated on a previously under-used recreation ground behind the village hall and have replaced the worn out 1980s play equipment.
The village had seen a significant increase in the number of young children in recent years and as a result were crying out for much needed recreational facilities.
Project co-ordinator, Jan Sablitzky, said: “The vision was to provide robust, well-designed and aesthetically suitable facilities for a wide range of ages and abilities and I’m delighted to say we’ve achieved that and more. Parents now have a wonderful play area to take their children and know that they are in a safe and secure environment.”
The play facilities include a wooden adventure trail, zip wire, climbing frames and team swing.
Jan added: “The wooden-designed equipment fits in perfectly with the rural setting and has been a big hit with children of all ages and
‘young at hearts’ too.”
Local councillor Andy Stewart, who attended the opening with Nottinghamshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment and Sustainability, Richard Butler, commented: “This play area has become a real meeting place for lots of families and was a much-needed facility for the village of Oxton.” Richard Butler added: “It is also a great example of everyone working together for the benefit of the whole community.”
VIPs (and the ice-cream van) visit Oxton’s new playspace celebrations
For a few hours on Saturday 10th September, the sun shone brightly and the bunting fluttered as folk picnicked and children played on the new equipment.
Nottingham City Councillor Brian Grocock, Notts County Councillors Richard Butler and Andy Stewart and our MP, Mark Spencer, came along to join in the community celebrations as well as representatives from WREN, RCAN, NSDC, the contractors, Oxton Community Fundraisers and local business sponsors.
Jill Jones, as Oxton Parish Council Chair, thanked everyone who had supported this new facility in any way – including David Wilkes and Jan Sablitzky from the Parish Council’s recreation ground working group (alias “ORG”) who led the playspaces project over the past 3+ years – and to the rota of ‘Playspace Carers’ from our village who now help look after it so we can all enjoy it for many years to come.
Cllr Richard Butler described the project as a shining example of what communities with a vision, initiative and hard-working volunteers can achieve, in partnership.