Cheshire East Council is set to begin another major project to revamp one of the borough’s leisure and recreation spots as part of its long-term strategy to raise the standard of local amenities.
The municipal parks strategy sets out the council’s long-term ambitions for bringing local parks and outdoor recreation areas up to a consistently high standard and to explore alternative avenues of funding and management.
The council is now to invest £500,000 in Browns Lane recreation area, in Wilmslow. This will see the site transformed into a small neighbourhood park for people of all ages.
It will include an accessible path with seating for rest and relaxation, a play area with many inclusive play opportunities, a multi-use games area and an informal natural turf ‘kick about’ pitch. A sustainable drainage system will be installed and this will include an attractive new pond.
In line with the council’s municipal parks strategy, the money has come from developer contributions linked to new housing developments. It will provide a much-needed recreation facility for the Wilmslow and Dean Row area and represents a further achievement in the council’s long-term ambitions for sustainable quality parks and outdoor amenities.
Councillor Laura Crane, Cheshire East Council cabinet member responsible for green spaces, said: “I am aware that local residents have been eager to find out when this was likely to happen but I can now confirm that this project will begin imminently.
“Unfortunately, this does mean that the site will have to be closed to the public for health and safety reasons for some time and, as our team of contractors will be observing social distancing requirements, this could have some impact on the schedule for this work to be completed.
“However, we will ensure that – weather permitting – it proceeds according to plan and that, as a result, the borough has another of its green spaces transformed into a first-class recreation park for the benefit of local families and young people.
“The pandemic has highlighted the value and importance of our outdoor green spaces as the country moves out of lockdown.
“The council has always been committed to the long-term improvement of our parks and open spaces owing to the health benefits and asset value they bring to our communities.”
Councillor Toni Fox said: “As local ward member, I am extremely pleased to see this project going ahead. Local residents have been looking forward to having a high standard recreation facility to replace the equipment already on this site.”
The council works with a large number of local ‘friends groups’, parish and town councils to deliver its strategy and ensure that all its parks and green spaces meet local needs.. Each year the council undertakes a number of park and play area improvement projects in towns across the borough. The local community are always involved in the design, followed by a consultation to check that they are supportive of the plans.