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A new Stapleford playground is on the way!

We’re excited to announce that the build of our new under 12s playground is about to start at Stapleford Rec.

Thanks to funding received from the FCC Foundation and generous donations from other local sources, the Parish Council can now reveal that works are due to begin on the 22 November. If everything goes according to plan, the build will take about 3 weeks, meaning that the new playground will be ready for children to enjoy over the Christmas holiday.

The range of equipment was chosen in consultation with local schoolchildren. They wanted a new slide on the hill, a trampoline and a sandpit; we’re delighted to say that they all feature in the new design. The swings are also being refurbished, the wooden tower slide is being repurposed, and we’re introducing some new bits of equipment designed for imaginative and active play. You can see an indicative image of the new playground below – it’s worth saying, this isn’t an exact plan, more an artist’s impression of the site when complete.

Our major funder, FCC Foundation, is excited about what’s coming to the village. If you don’t know FCC Foundation, they are a not-for-profit business that awards grants for community projects through the Landfill Communities Fund. As Richard Smith, grant manager for our project, says: “It’s always nice to see something we have funded start to take shape. We’re delighted to be supporting such a worthwhile project and look forward to it benefitting children and families across Stapleford and South Cambridgeshire.”

In addition to support from FCC Foundation, it’s been a real community fundraising effort. The Stapleford Messenger Fund, the Village Hall Fund and the South Cambs Community Chest Covid Recovery Fund have all contributed to make the playground somewhere local children will enjoy with their families. We’re also using some of the remaining Section 106 funding which was provided to the parish several years ago; and thanks to a donation from Scotsdales, we will have new picnic benches, something which a survey undertaken in July 2020 showed that families wanted in the play area. Finally, we must thank individual contributions to the JustGiving appeal. Lots of local donations, ranging from £5 to £500, have all gone towards the new playground.

We think it’s going to be a fantastic place for local children to play and we were delighted to receive so much support from the local community. In no small part, this was due to the hard work of local residents – Rosie Brown, Rebecca Trigg and Beckie Whitehouse – who have worked alongside Gillian Pett, Chair of the Parish Council, to turn dreams into plans and now into reality. We really are extremely grateful for their time and energy.

Some practical information for families:

  • The playground will be shut from Saturday 20 November – a group of local residents will spend the weekend preparing the site and removing some unwanted equipment.
  • Contractor Kompan will start work from Monday 22 November. They will be onsite from about 7.30am to 3pm most weekdays, unless the weather disrupts plans!
  • There will be a container and skip on site during the build phase, situated next to the MUGA. This will be removed at the end of the works.
  • Work is scheduled to take 3 weeks with an anticipated opening date of 17 December, although this may be subject to change.
  • We plan to hold an opening event for local children once the work is complete – keep an eye on local social media for more details!

For more information, please contact clerk@staplefordparishcouncil.gov.uk and gpett@staplefordparishcouncil.gov.uk.