On the evening of Wednesday 15th of March, Castle Douglas Development Forum held an open meeting at the Community Centre to discuss which of the three contending design proposals for the new Playpark For All was best suited to the community’s requirements.
Nicola Simpson, Community Assets Manager, DG Council, presented the designs and gave a very clear summary of the benefits and potential disadvantages of each. Around 20 people, including counsellors John Young and Pauline Drysdale; Helen Turner, the Holywood Trust; Karen Lewis, Adult Carers Support Worker; CDDF trustees and staff as well as other members of the community, looked at the designs and asked questions.
One concern was that the designs on show do not have a quiet, ’chill out’ area for young people who might need to take a break from active and noisy play. It was decided that a sensory garden and quite seating area, already in CDDF’s longer term plans, should be added as soon as possible. This is a project the trustees hope the CDDF Men’s Shed will get involved with.
Everyone present was asked to vote on which design they preferred. The community’s choice will go back to the Council who have taken on the task of tendering, awarding the contract and managing the build, on behalf of CDDF. The intention is that the playpark will be open by June in time for the summer holidays.
Carolyn Yates, CDDF Chairperson thanked everyone for taking the time to come along and for sharing their views with the CDDF trustees. She said “this has been quite a long time coming, due to the pandemic and its impact on the companies tendering for the contract. We thank all the community and organisations in the town and around who have given advice, donations and encouragement. We are particularly grateful for the advice and support given to us by council officers over the past three years, despite the impact of the pandemic on their workload. This is just the start. Thanks to the Holywood Trust, who will fund a Changing Places facility, accessible pathways and fitness equipment for young adults; and the town’s Common Good Fund which has added a sheltered gazebo with a wheel chair and pram friendly table and seating to the plan, we are already able to enhance the designs we looked at this evening.”
CDDF continues to fund raise for the playpark as the rise in the cost of living is having an impact on the project, limiting what can be done in this first phase. If you’d like to make a donation or to know more about the playpark for all, please contact [email protected] .