New seafront water park is a splash hit!
- Credit: Lauren De Boise
Judging by the shrieks and cries of delight Gorleston's new splash pad more than met expectations when it finally opened this morning.
Youngsters came well prepared in swimming costumes and wrapped in towels to be among the first to try out the £300,000 wet play facility on the resort's lower prom.
The much-anticipated attraction has been taking shape for the last few months giving children a tantalising glimpse of what was to come.
It was opened in the traditional way with a ribbon cutting by the mayor Cllr Mary Coleman who gave a short welcome speech with council leader Graham Plant.
After a cloudy start the sun came out with approving promptness as children fired fountains at each other and tested their nerves under a tipping bucket.
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Jasper Bartrum-Smith was among the first to skip among the jets and sprays declaring the facility 'fantastic.'
The six-year-old, from Gorleston, said the spinning flagpole was his favourite element, combining strength and fire power with the added bonus of drenching his new chums.
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His grandmother Anne Stirling said the pair had come down especially for the open day.
She described the splash pad as 'brilliant' adding it was a nice surprise to discover it was all free. As well as giving gaming-mad youngsters a break from screens it also gave them the opportunity to make new friends and play together in a safe place where it was easy to keep an eye on them, she added.
The pool replaces a 1960's built paddling pool, which although popular was deemed to have had its day.
The splash pad is being hailed as safe and inviting, with no depth of water and soft matting.
Anneliza Plant, from Gorleston, brought her daughters Izzy, aged eight and three-year-old Ezmai.
She said: 'It's so nice to see because the old pool was very slippy and dangerous. It is going to bring a lot of people here.'
The splash pad is expected to be instantly popular with lots of families choosing to 'chill out' in Gorleston over the summer.
Its intelligent systems monitor usage and chlorine levels, although they are manually checked twice a day.
It will open 10-4pm seven days a week during the holidays.
The hours could be extended if there is demand.