Clifton Play Park
clifton play park team
Update - February 2021
The pandemic and lockdowns have prevented the CVCA Park Team from meeting, but we have continued to communicate on email and raise funds.
We began our refurbishment of the park because the CVCA, along with Clifton residents were concerned about the condition of the Clifton park play area equipment, the lack of equipment and the disappearance of the slide during summer 2018. The roundabout had previously been removed several years before. Our current CMBC Playground Projects Officer is Emma Mavin who is fully supportive and works hard on our behalf.
Where we started:
- Clifton Park was allocated funding from the CMBC Playgrounds budget for the refurbishment (it didn’t go far).
- We consulted with the community, people requested a slide, picnic table/ bench sets, more seating, older age climbing frame and basket swing.
- The park is owned by Calderdale MBC and they are responsible for the installation and safe upkeep of the grounds and equipment.
- There are only 8 play equipment companies in the UK of industry-standard and we must use one of these if buying equipment.
- New equipment must be suitable for a range of ages and must encourage good health and fitness.
Where we are at:
- The CMBC budget funding has paid for the refurbishment (sanding down and repainting) of the two sets of two swings (with two new inclusive baskets on the ‘toddler’ swings), the ‘younger age’ climbing frame including the removal of the bark and small wooden posts around the climbing frame area, which has now been replaced by a new safe, green carpet surface.
- We arranged a new ‘Litter/dog waste accepted’ bin positioned, as requested, away from the existing bench.
- The Holiday Inn funded a new bench. This new bench cost £345 (plus VAT), was installed by Calderdale MBC in November 2019. The CVCA funded the installation plus a plaque.
- St John’s Church paid for the refurbishment (costing £200) of the 1978 Trust House Forte bench. The work was completed by GB Stone cleaning. CVCA paid for a plaque.
- We have had meetings on the park with four play equipment companies to discuss options re installation and positioning of future equipment.
- The SutcliffePlay Open day 2019 was attended by two representatives.
- CMBC told us to ‘start small’ and apply to the Calderdale Small Grants Scheme. An application for £2500 grant towards the purchase and installation of two ‘springies’ was made. We were awarded £1750 which paid for the springies, but not the installation. We applied to Calderdale Community Grants for the shortfall and the team worked very hard to support us and find us a donor fund for £690 (Kingscliffe Fund). Calderdale MBC paid for the balance of £494.09 (classed as match funding from our budget). The two springies are in place and well used!
- We have made unsuccessful applications to Co-op Community Grants, Tesco Bags of Help, Localgiving, Persimmon and National Lottery, among others. Feedback initially suggested that the only problem is the sheer volume of applications. Now, all community funding is understandably distributed towards support for people during the pandemic.
- One of our members successfully applied for £1000 from Lloyds TSB towards the slide.
- Applying for grants is very time consuming and when successful, there is also evaluation, accounts and a requirement to publicise the funding.
- Clifton Village Community Association raised £4400 from the Scarecrow Festival 2019 for the Clifton Park Play Area and pledged the proceeds from the 2020 Festival. Unfortunately, due to the pandemic, the 2020 festival could not take place.
- The money from the 2019 Festival, Lloyds TSB and a donation from the CVCA plus CMBC match funding has enabled us to buy the slide and a green safe surface. The cost of the slide, surface and installation was over £12,000. The installation started on 24th February 2020 and the Clifton 4-14 years prize draw for ‘First down the slide’ took place on 4th March 2020.
- We have a had a few problems with both new green safe carpets. In the end the one under the climbing frame has been fully replaced, obviously at no cost to ourselves. The one under the slide was damaged by a council mower in the summer and there have been three repairs which have been unsatisfactory. We are still following this up.
- We have removed the old tiles from where the old slide was. We also removed the concrete so that soil and turf could be put down. This has much improved the appearance of the park.
- We wish to express our thanks to all Clifton residents who have raised money for the park during the pandemic by taking part in many activities: Friday cake bakes, Halloween window competition, Pumpkin carving competition, Name the witch’s cat competition, sale of Christmas wreath making kits, sale of Christmas trees, Christmas Hamper raffle, the sale of Old Clifton photos. We are currently raising funds from the Armytage Valentine window messages.
- A big thank you goes to a Clifton resident who provided our ‘Fundraising thermometer’ showing almost £30,000 funding and fundraising in total. This was replaced with a new one in January 2021 and we are already heading up the scale towards our next target.
- Our next plan is to buy some seating and tables in the park to enable families and friends to socialise together, whilst watching their children playing on the park, keeping fit and healthy in the fresh air. Our aim of providing a financially inclusive play area, ensuring the equipment is free and available to all is very slowly coming to fruition. We want our seating to be inclusive for all – with access for children and adults with disabilities, preferably made from sustainable materials.