Call for new children's playground on the Downs
Parents living near Clifton and Durdham Downs are calling for the Downs Committee to yield some land for a children’s playground.
Green Party councillor Carla Denyer, representing the parents, made a request to the Downs Committee. They said that they would consider it, but first need to see that there is sufficient demand.
Cllr Denyer says: “A few weeks ago I set up a petition for a new children’s play area on the Downs, after local parents got in touch with me about the lack of any children’s play equipment in my ward (Clifton Down). I am really pleased that the petition has already got over 400 signatures and is still growing. I hope this will help show the Downs committee that there is significant local demand.
“Outdoor play is so valuable for children’s development and wellbeing, and it’s important to have it near where children live so they can reach it safely and easily.”
There is already an excellent playground at the other end of the Downs, near the Suspension Bridge. However, at over 1.5 miles from the top of Whiteladies Road, it is too far for most young children to walk to from the centre of the Downs.
The petition says that the playground should be “preferably near the Water Tower and Cafe on Stoke Road” but leaves the specifics to be worked out by the Downs Committee.
The petition has already collected over 400 signatures in its first two weeks, but campaigners hope to collect more to make a strong case.
Local parent, Rupert Stuart-Baker, said: “The Downs is a fantastic asset to the City of Bristol. It is a beautiful open space for everyone to enjoy.
“The success of the sustainable playground by the Clifton Suspension Bridge is great for families living in Clifton village and Leigh Woods and for the many visitors to the area. However, for the many families who live on the other side of the Downs towards Whiteladies Road, Stoke Hill and Redland Road, it’s a 20-minute walk for an adult let alone a toddler to the current playground.
“A sustainable playground located by the water tower and café over a mile to the North would give access to great facilities for families in Redland, Clifton, Westbury Park, Henleaze, Bishopston and Stoke Bishop and Sneyd Park. It’s a great idea and one we fully support.”
To add your name to the petition see: www.actionnetwork.org/petitions/downsplayground
(• This petition was started during the coronavirus lockdown, at a time when most play equipment is cordoned off to protect our public health. The petitioners understand and support these measures, and only want to see a new playground in use when it is safe to do so.)