After heated meeting - inspector to assess Wymondham playscape site

Derek Ward at the Kings Head Meadow playground removal protest, Wymondham. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Derek Ward at the Kings Head Meadow playground removal protest, Wymondham. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2016

A representative from Play England is to be invited to assess a Wymondham park, in the latest instalment in the town's King's Head Meadow playscape saga.

The playscape was once again the subject of fierce debate at a Wymondham Town Council meeting at the Central Hall on Tuesday, which about 50 people were at.

It followed the publication of a statement from a working group, which was set up to resolve the issue of whether the playscape could remain at its current spot at the meadow.

The statement said moving the equipment to the Central Hall side of the meadow was the 'only viable solution' - although not all members of the working group agreed with this.

The playscape was installed in 2014 at a cost of £75,000 on the site of other play equipment, but complaints over noise and anti-social behaviour from nearby residents led to a majority of councillors voting to have it removed last year, to the objection of many residents.

One of them, Derek Ward, spoke against the proposed site, saying: 'It's a totally unacceptable site. It puts up too many health and safety risks for the children.'


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Neil Seach, Wymondham Access Group chairman, also spoke against the playscape moving. He said: 'There are alternatives that would cost less and still keep it accessible.'

Councillors Lee Hornby and Penny Stearn repeated their view the playscape should not have been installed where it was in the first place.

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Cllr Horby said it was a mistake 'by the previous administration' to put it at that site.

Cllr Kevin Hurn called for all parties to be willing to be compromise.

Councillors voted to have town clerk Trevor Gurney accompany the Play England representative to assess the feasibility of moving the playscape to the Central Hall side, and also look at other sites on the meadow.

The working group will meet to decide if the group's chairman, Amy Brooke from Norfolk County Council, should also be at the assessment.

But at the meeting, some members of the public questioned whether having more people there would prejudice Play England's findings.

Feedback on the playscape can still be passed onto Ms Brooke by email amy.brooke@norfolk.gov.uk

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