Consultation - 13th May to 1st June 2015
Earlier consultations had shown that local people would like improved play facilities on Troopers Hill Field but we needed to be sure that that was still the case and, if so, for what age range the play area should be designed. In May we distributed a consultation leaflet to local homes and schools and the consultation was also available on-line.
We had an excellent response to the consultation and were delighted to see that our proposals were strongly supported by local people. Thank you to everyone who took the time to respond.
From a total of 481 responses received just over 95% of replies were in favour of a new play area.
Over 84% of respondents said children under 5 needed play equipment with a slightly higher percentage, nearly 91% saying it was needed for children aged 5-11. Nearly 82 % of replies were in favour of a play area for children under 5 being fenced, this fell to just under 50% for 5-11 years old.
Thank you to the Week In for printing the article about the consultation shown above (click on image to enlarge).
The results of this survey give Friends of Troopers Hill and the parents leading this project a clear mandate to go ahead with a design consultation aimed at encouraging local people to say what should be included in a play area for children under 5 and 5-11 year olds.
This design consultation took place on the afternoon of Sunday 5th July.
We had hoped to hold the event in Troopers Hill Field but unfortunately due to rain we had to move to Summerhill Methodist Church (which had been advertised as an alternaive wet weather venue).
The weather meant we had a lower attendance than we had hoped, but meant that we were able to have more in depth conversations with those who did attend and we heard some interesting ideas and suggestions. We were particularly pleased that two residents whose homes are immediately adjacent to the Field were able to attend.
Both the consultation and the workshop showed support for our original proposal for a fenced area aimed at children of under 5 with an adjacent activity trail for 5 to 11 year olds.
We reviewed the results of the consultations with Bristol City Council's Youth and Play Officer, John Knowlson, and discovered that tunnels, although popular in our design consultation, are not a good idea as they attract anti-social behaviour. Similarly noise/music making equipment had to be taken out in another part of the city because teenagers were keeping local people awake. John was able to make suggestions to provide a similar play experience to tunnels by making use of panels so children can be supervised and not out of sight but giving the children a feeling of an enclosed space in which to use their imagination.
Design Brief & Quotes
The information gathered from the consultations has been used to create a design brief which we sent to play equipment companies approved by Bristol City Council to ask for quotes.
We received quotes & detailed designs from three different suppliers in early September.
For the grant applications we decided to split the project into two phases. Phase 1 is the fenced play area for under 5s and the access path. Phase 2 is the activity trail for 5 to 11 year olds.
As part of the application process we had to gather together a lot of information, including letters of support which we received from Bristol Parks, local police and our MP, Kerry McCarthy.
Copies of these letters were sent with the applications, together with the quotes we received; details of the consultations and evidence that we have permission to proceed from Bristol City Council and that they will maintain the completed play area.