£500k playpark is in full swing as bid is agreed

Fun times are just around the corner for kids of all ages in Peebles after approval was granted for a new £500,000 playpark and pump track in the town.

How Peebles playpark will look.
How Peebles playpark will look.

The facility lined up for grassland at Victoria Park, off Springhill Road, is to feature equipment for children from the ages of two to 14 and also for youngsters with additional needs.

A new bike pump track is to be created alongside it and the existing football area will be revamped.

It follows new playparks already created in Hawick, Galashiels, Oxton, Stow, Harestanes, Coldstream and Kelso over the last three years.

Tweeddale East councillor Robin Tatler, the authority’s executive member for community development and localities, says the new playpark would “provide an outstanding range of equipment and facilities for young people”, adding: “This development forms part of much bigger plans for Peebles that will include a 3G pitch at the high school as part of its redevelopment.”

Plans for the new playpark generated the overwhelming support of local people, with a dozen messages of support, with many pleased to see that it would incorporate facilities for a variety of ages.

However, one resident did object to the scheme on traffic and pedestrian safety grounds, saying: “Traffic will be increased in an already congested area. There is insufficient capacity for parking already. Nearby roads are fully parked as is Kingsmeadows. The park provides an important pedestrian route from houses south of the Tweed to the High Street and bikes and scooters accessing the pump track will impede this and create a danger to pedestrians. There are multiple parks within Peebles which are badly maintained, but could provide the same facility and avoid developing a green, well used and peaceful park.”

Attractions at the park are to include a toddlers swing island, a jungle trail and a pirate boat feature.

A report approving the bid from council planning officer Ranald Dods says: “Although construction of the playpark would reduce the area of grassed park available for informal sports activities, the development is clearly compatible with a public park.”