Major makeover for Kettering park play area

Some of the equipment at the new Rockingham Road Pleasure Park play area
Some of the equipment at the new Rockingham Road Pleasure Park play area

One of Kettering’s premier parks is to receive a major makeover this autumn with a new £60,000 play and fitness area development.

Local firm Wicksteed Playscapes won the contract to install an all new fitness zone along with a major play area refurbishment at Rockingham Road Pleasure Park.

The plans for the park include an ‘outdoor gym’, which is made of up of fitness equipment similar to that found in a conventional fitness gym. This will be Kettering’s second outdoor gym with a third planned for next spring in Brambleside.

Both will be free to use and permanently open. Wicksteed Playscapes will also totally refurbish the existing children’s play area by adding six new pieces, including an all new bespoke climbing frame specially designed for the park.

The project, which has been developed by Kettering Council and the Friends of Rockingham Road Pleasure Park group, has been made possible thanks to the involvement of the local community.

Funding has been provided by both the council and Friends group, as well as not for profit funding organisation WREN, who contributed £48,000 through the Landfill Communities Fund.

Peter Cox, managing director of WREN, said: “WREN is committed to funding projects that make a real difference to local communities, children and families.

“The Pleasure Park project will provide a fantastic space for local people to get fit, get healthy and have some fun. We’re delighted to support Kettering Borough Council to make this happen and look forward to the completion of the project in November this year.”

Nina Lloyd, 9, said: “I love the Pleasure Park, but the play area there, it’s all really old now. I could not believe my eyes when I saw the big pictures of all the new stuff they are going to put in, it’s amazing. I can’t wait to play on it all.”

Valerie Hitchman, head of community services at Kettering Borough Council, said: “The project has been developed over the last year in close consultation with local people and schools and the contract was awarded after a major local vote based on designs of how the park could look”.

Cllr Jan Smith, portfolio holder for community at Kettering Borough Council, said: “Despite the economic difficulties, we remain committed to improving facilities within the borough.

“This scheme is about more than play, it’s about the community working to develop opportunities for improving the health and wellbeing of everyone. In supplying nearly all of the funding, WREN has clearly recognised this.”