Buxton play area reopens after £70k facelift

High Peak MP Andrew Bingham joined the Friends of Pavilion Gardens and local children to officially open the new play area.
High Peak MP Andrew Bingham joined the Friends of Pavilion Gardens and local children to officially open the new play area.

A play area at Buxton’s Pavilion Gardens has reopened following a major £70,000 facelift.

Installed in 2000 as part of the Heritage Lottery-funded restoration of the Gardens, the popular toddler play area for young children was in need of modernisation.

Lily Powers and pupils from Chapel Primary School at the roundabout inspired by their ideas for accessible play equipment watched by Mr Bingham and members of the Friends group.

Lily Powers and pupils from Chapel Primary School at the roundabout inspired by their ideas for accessible play equipment watched by Mr Bingham and members of the Friends group.

The project has seen the original equipment replaced with new challenging and accessible equipment and safety surfacing.

High Peak MP Andrew Bingham joined local children and representatives from High Peak Borough Council and the Friends of Pavilion Gardens to officially open the facilities.

Councillor John Haken, executive councillor for operational services at the council, said: “This play area is among the most popular attractions in the Gardens, so I’m delighted that we and our partners have been able to refurbish it and install new, more contemporary, play equipment for children to enjoy.

I’m sure the families and young people who visit the play area will have fun here for years to come.”

Among the guests were children from Chapel-en-le-Frith Primary School who had written to the council with their ideas for what they’d like to see installed in the play area as part of an official letter writing project – and their fellow pupil and inspiration for some of their ideas, Lily Powers, was guest of honour on the day.

Lily, who uses a wheelchair, was behind the children’s ideas for the inclusion of accessible play equipment, including a roundabout and a swing, which were included in the refurbishment project and the class has been treated to a visit to the Pavilion Gardens as a reward for their hard work.

Mr Bingham said: “I was delighted to visit the refurbished Pavilion Gardens play area. High Peak Borough Council has done an excellent job and the children loved playing on all the equipment.

“I was particularly impressed by the way the council has involved the children from Chapel Primary School in the design of the equipment and that the children had highlighted the need for accessible play equipment.

“All involved – including the Friends of Pavilion Gardens groups – should be very proud of the new facilities.”

Working in partnership with the Friends group enabled the council to secure £50,000 from SITA Trust to add to the £20,000 it had earmarked for the improvement scheme.

Brian Shepherd, from the Friends group, added: “We felt it was important to include young children in this project as they are the ones who will be playing here, so we were really pleased to welcome children from Green Lane Nursery and Chapel Primary School to our opening.

“It’s lovely to see the children having fun and making the most of these new facilities.”