Water Play Area, Paddling Pool Project
Friends of Dukes Meadows
After three and a half years of working to restore Dukes Meadows we are very pleased with the
progress made. A significant step has been finding an architect and landscape designer through
"Business in the Community", to produce a plan to restore the Play Area and Old Paddling Pools
and Promenade Approach. We have no funding at present to implement the scheme, however, and
will need to raise this ourselves.
Over the summer 2002 architect Alice Brown and landscape architects Elizabeth Banks Assoc
completed the first draft of the new scheme for the play area, paddling pools and Promenade Approach.
We have had a very constructive meeting with the council and our MP Ann Keen, and both are eager to help us raise the funding to implement the plans.
The draft plans will be on display at the Pavilion Studio opening on the 24th November and we would welcome your feedback. A link to the plans will be available soon.
We are very grateful to Rosanna Henderson of Pro Help a brilliant organisation that brokers    professional help pro bono for voluntary groups and charities.
Alice Brown of AAB is the architect and Elizabeth Banks Associates the landscape designer. We
have not asked AAB to design or choose the play equipment that would go into the new area since we want to get local people, particularly young people, involved in deciding this. We have asked for a paddling pool to be included, but for this to be built Friends of Dukes Meadows may have to agree to be responsible for it, and we will have to decide whether we are wiling to do this.
Because of fears of being sued Local Authorities have, over recent years, opted for lower less challenging play equipment in their parks that carry minimal risk of injury. There is a debate, however as to whether in attempting to make play areas "safe" the fun of using them and the opportunity to develop balance and risk assessing skills has been lost. Please see the article from The Sunday Times       "Play areas to teach lost art of risk-taking" or use tab at top of page.
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