COLERAINE Borough Council’s £100k invesment in parks in Portrush has hit a bum note with residents and holiday makers.
Last week we were contacted by several disgruntled parents who were unimpressed with the newly refurbished parks at the Dunluce Centre and the Recreation Grounds in the resort.
However, Coleraine Borough Council have told us that the parks are only an ‘interim solution’.
One parent we spoke to who uses the parks regularly with her two children told The Times that her children were ‘unimpressed’.
“We live a few minutes away from one of thes park and our children were so excited to hear that the old park was being replaced.
“My children are aged 5 and 9 - there was nothing suitable for them to play on for more than a few minutes.
“The swings have been replaced by one saucer swing which older children were queued to get onto, and then there were baby swings.
“I understand that there are budget constraints, but other Councils seem to be able to fund suitable play equipment for their local children, never mind the fact that this is tourist destination.
“Huge funding has been put in place for environmental improvements in Station Square for bands to play in the old amphitheatre. No thought has been given to our children’s right to play, or the value of outdoor play for our children’s physical and social development.
“I would appeal to the Council to look at its distribution of funds and prioritise the wellbeing of our children.”
We contacted Coleraine Borough Council, and in a statement they said: “Equipment within these two playparks had come to the end of their life - Council was then faced with two options, either to close the parks completely or alternatively to invest in the two locations on a short term basis.
“Council is currently leading an ‘Options Appraisal’ on these areas to establish the long term future of what can be hosted in the locations as part of the strategic regeneration of Portrush. In the meantime, the current play equipment is an interim solution. Whilst Council accepts the provision of play equipment at these two sites is not at the level of the new Ballysally Play park, it was deemed important and essential that some provision was made in the short term whilst the medium term future of both these sites is considered.”