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Derry Accommodation - St Columb's Park and Adventure Playground

St Columb’s Park Leisure Centre, situated in a woodland park of approximately 24 hectares, also provides a sports hall and squash courts.
T: 028 7134 3941
Set in a beautiful wooded parkland, this centre boasts excellent outdoor facilities. Indoors, the centre is well equipped to cater for most dry side activities to suit all age groups

Adventure Play Environment - new for 2009
Work has commenced on the development of a new Adventure Play Environment within the natural setting of St Columb’s Park as part of the Play for a Change Programme. This district wide facility aims to transform the world of outdoor play for children in the city and set a new standard for provision that is both challenging and stimulating.

This innovative project is a partnership between Derry City Council, the Children’s Commission, Liberty Consortium, St Columb’s Park House and the North West Regional College. Over £360,000 has been secured for Phase 1 developments from Derry City Council and the EU Programme for Peace and Reconciliation Peace II Extension managed for Special EU Programmes Body by the Local Strategy Partnership for Derry City Council area. A local firm of Landscape Architects, MWA Partnership, has designed the scheme.

The Play for a Change Partnership has been working together for the past 2 years in developing this innovate play environment. Inspiration has been drawn from London in terms of developing a facility that is creative, adventurous and educational.

The Mayor, Councillor Gerard Diver, welcoming the plans said there was a real need for Adventure Play Environment across the city in line with Council’s Corporate Plan (2006-2009) and the Interagency Play Strategy.
“Derry City Council is committed to play provision in the city and to actively promoting children and young people to get involved in play. This is a very successful partnership project involving a number of agencies that are working together to improve the facilities for children’s play. The importance of play and outdoor activity for children cannot be understated particularly at a time when computer games and television feature so prominently in the everyday lives of our children and young people.”

John Kelpie, City Engineer outlined the core elements of the new adventure play environment to be challenging.
“The project is designed to the highest standards. The structure to be used is a German timber product, which will be very sympathetic to the natural setting within St Columb’s Park. The scheme will include large climbing frames, towers and a double aerial slide”

The play park will be the first of its kind in Northern Ireland and challenges the more traditional view of play parks. Elements such as a forest schools programme, climbing towers, creative structures and a construction area, where children are provided with a variety of materials and tools that will enable them to build their own dens the park, promises to deliver a unique experience for 5 to 14 year olds and their parents. In addition to this certain areas will be staffed by play animators at certain times throughout each week in order to encourage children and families to explore facilities and play elements throughout the park so that they can experience the ultimate adventure.

Catherine Cooke, Co Chairperson, Local Strategy Partnership for Derry City Council area: “welcomed the development as the Local Strategy Partnership’s Flagship project which will make a real difference to the children and young people of the City and District creating a shared and inclusive space building reconciliation through play”

Clionagh Boyle from the Children’s Commission said,
“Derry Children’s Commission are delighted to be working with Council on this project to create a new play environment that will ultimately build awareness of the importance of play and create opportunities for children and young people to learn, co-operate and meet new physical challenges that will help them gain self-confidence in a safe environment.”

Brian Dougherty from St Columb’s Park House said that St Columb’s Park House was delighted to be part of this exciting and innovative initiative and welcomed the first phase of the construction of the play environment. He continued
“It will not only enhance St Columb’s Park as a city-wide attraction but will add to our ethos of encouraging community relations in a fun and constructive way.”





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