Winning Designs Chosen for New Blagrave Recreation Ground Playgrounds
READING Council has selected the winning designs for the two new play areas at Blagrave Recreation Ground in Tilehurst.
A consultation, launched on 13 January, put the choice of five playground designs to the public vote online.
The winning designs, from HAGS, received 40% of the votes.
Once the public consultation was completed, the results formed part of the final selection of the winning designs, which also included consultation with Reading's Accessible Play Task and Finish Group and assessments on value for money and technical competency.
Blagrave Recreation Ground, located in the centre of Tilehurst, has been earmarked for a £244K investment, as part of Reading Borough Council’s capital investment programme for play areas over the next 3 years.
The existing equipment and surfacing have reached the end of their life and the Council is now taking this opportunity to replace everything and reconfigure the two playground areas within the park to make best use of the available space - each of which is aimed at a different age group. The area closest to the local nursery provides for younger children, whilst the second provides facilities for primary school age children.
The new play areas will include an exciting mix of play equipment which are accessible to all abilities – including:
- New surfaces designed for ease of access and movement
- Ground-level trampolines
- Basket swings and swing units (including one fully supported seat)
- A ground-level roundabout fully accessible to wheelchairs
The work is anticipated to start on-site at the end of March with an aim to be completed by the end of June 2021. The existing play area will be closed while the refurbishment is undertaken.
The winning designs are now on display online at www.reading.gov.uk/Blagrave
Cllr Karen Rowland, Reading’s Lead Member for Culture, Heritage and Recreation, said: “I’m pleased to announce the winning designs – which have proved overwhelmingly the most popular choice.
“It is one of our key priorities that we provide high quality, accessible equipment in as many of our playgrounds as possible so that children of all abilities can play together. I’m delighted that we are able to put such a significant sum into Blagrave Recreation Ground. Understanding what our children want in terms of play spaces just makes common sense, and I’m really pleased we’ve been able to ensure this by engaging the local community in voting for their favourite designs.
"Once again, I am delighted that we have been able to consult with Reading’s Accessible Play Task and Finish Group. The group is an invaluable resource to the Council in helping us to ensure that we provide the best possible offerings in terms of play that is accessible to as many children as possible.
“The really good news is that by mid-summer, children in Tilehurst can look forward to exploring and enjoying two new play areas at Blagrave Recreation Ground, with excellent provision for younger and older children.”
Jilly Saunders, Area Manager for HAGS, said: “We are delighted that the HAGS design was the most popular choice amongst the local community and Reading’s Accessible Play Task and Finish Group.
“Our design team thoroughly enjoyed working to create the best possible solution that met the needs of Reading Borough Council and the local community.
“Blagrave Recreation Ground will be an invaluable space where children can play together no matter their age or ability for many years to come."
Notes to editors
Find out more about HAGS at: