Monday 10 March 2014

Chalkhill Park gets fenced in

Open Access
Fenced In
Chalkhill residents were surpised last week to see a railing fence going up around their new park. When the park was being planned many residents wanted a fence but were told no money was available. There was no planned separation of the pavement from the park with turf abutting the paving.

Shortly after the park was opened a car was driven on to the grass causing some damage to planting and seating but since then it has been relatively free from vandalism. Low roped posts were placed around the flowerbeds to stop the plants being trampled. Some parents feared their toddlers running straight into the road from the park and others were worried about children chasing miskicked footballs into the road and being hit by cars.

Although I respect those fears I confess that I really liked the open aspect of the park and the way people could wander in and out without having to find a gate, allowing  very sociable interaction between passersby and park users, particularly those on the outdoor gym equipment.  In a way it symbolised the open, friendly nature of the residents. However, there will be a gate at every point where a park path meets the pavement.

It appears that some money became available at the financial year end and the fence is being put in, at what a  person experienced at such installations, reckoned would be a cost of £30,000-£40,000. There are no plans at present for the park gates to be locked at night.

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