Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council Health and Recreation Department

Play // Category

Category based archive
07 Nov
Winter is here and it’s getting colder and darker – but it’s still a great time for getting children of all ages outdoors. We just need to EMBRACE the weather!

Have a playful and positive attitude towards the winter season; show your children that winter can be fun. Try to model ways to be playful …. stamp your feet on ice patches or in puddles, have a snowball fight, play in the rain, make snow angels or snowmen! Take a breath of that cold winter air and remember that whatever you do outdoors you are supporting your children’s health, wellbeing and happiness.

19 Oct
Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council are developing a new five year Aquatics Framework for the Borough for 2019 – 2024. The Framework will focus on working together with key stakeholders to develop the area of aquatics, which includes all aspects of swimming pool related activities and outdoor swimming.

As part of this consultation process we are seeking the opinions of as many members of the public as possible whether you currently participate in council run swimming activities or not.

17 Sep

Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council will be holding two public meetings in the Brownlow area of Craigavon this fortnight as it forges ahead with implementing its play strategy and delivering its ambitious programme of improving outdoor play provision for all children across the borough.

With a public meeting organised in the Moyraverty and Tullygally areas, residents in each locality are encouraged to engage with the council and play an active role in bringing exciting play development proposals to fruition.

The Moyraverty play park meeting will be held on Thursday 20 September at 7pm in Drumgor Detached Youth Centre (formerly Moyraverty Community Centre), followed by the Tullygally play park meeting on Thursday 27 September at 7pm in Tullygally Youth Centre.

These public meetings present a unique opportunity for members of the local community to share their views on site preference, design and layout of the play park along with choice of play equipment.

The council is committed to ensuring its extensive portfolio of play parks are maintained to the highest standards, developed to meet local need and well designed to provide quality play experiences for children in all parts of the borough.

24 Aug

Play Matters: Space, Place and Permission to Play

Space, place and permission are interrelated factors that have a significant impact on children’s play experiences. Due to an array of environmental, technological and societal factors, opportunities for children to play freely outdoors are on the decline.

The relationship between environmental opportunities for play and the wind fall benefits to children’s development and well-being has been researched and studied, the findings are clear – playing, particularly playing outdoors is good for both body and mind.

The environment we provide for children and the messages we emit, be they overt or subliminal, crucially influence the way children play and learn. Having a designated place to play or access to play space is fantastic, but without permission, all the space and time in the world is worthless.

PlayBoard’s 2018 conference ‘Play Matters: space, place and permission to play’ recognises the importance of outdoor play for young children’s healthy growth, learning and development.

Attend this year’s conference and explore how the voluntary sector, local authorities and statutory partners are working together to improve the provision and delivery of play.

Date: Tuesday October 16 2018
Venue: Riddel Hall, Stranmillis, Belfast.
Time: 9am – 4pm

Input from a diverse range of speakers from the fields of play, education, health, psychology, and environmental design shall encourage conference attendees to have a better understanding of the interrelatedness of space, place and permission to play.

Play has the unique quality of adding joy to our lives. Our conference will explore how you can add quality and variety to the play and learning opportunities of children and young people in Northern Ireland and beyond.

24 Aug

Come down to our Back to School Play Day on 30th August with a fantastic day of fun FREE activities for children of all ages to enjoy!

 

The Play Day events kick off in Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council’s Mourneview Community Centre from 12pm to 2pm followed by a Tea Dance event in Mourneview from 2pm to 4pm.

 

Come along for some Old School games, Hopscotch, Rhymes, Skipping, indoor and outdoor games, art workshops and Create and Play experience.

 

Then stick about for some live music, fancy bakes/sandwiches and bring your dancing shoes down to join in the fun at the Tea Dance.

 

There is no need to book in advance, both events are run on a drop in basis – so for a fun day of FREE activities why not come along and have a go!

20 Jul

 

Celebrate National Play Day on Wednesday 1st August with a fantastic day of fun FREE activities for children of all ages to enjoy!

 

As part of the annual celebration of children’s right to play and its importance in their lives, the National Play Day events kick off in Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council’s Lurgan Park from 10am to 1pm followed by an afternoon event in Portadown People’s Park from 2.30pm to 5.30pm.

 

Climb aboard the Belfast Playbus and enjoy lots of soft play fun or for the more energetic have a go at scaling the climbing wall.  With a range of art and craft workshops, face painting, inflatable games, balloon modelling, fun games and much more – there is something for everyone!

 

There is no need to book in advance, both events are run on a drop in basis – so for a fun day of FREE activities why not come along and have a go!

12 Jun

Two local play parks are getting significant investment through Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council’s Capital Play Development Programme – and work is due to start on Monday 18thJune on the exciting new designs and installation.

Loughbrickland and Magheralin play parks will see a total of £200,000 being invested to completely refurbish and transform each area.

Six parks within the borough have already been successfully renovated and reopened as part of the £4.75m Play Strategy, which will see investment in fixed and non-fixed play – both of which are crucial to child development, especially when outdoors.

Work is expected to take up to 12 weeks on each site and the parks will be closed during this time. Extensive consultation was carried out with the local community in each area and when the work is complete, the new look neighbourhood parks will cater for all children up to the age of 14.

Much consideration has been put into each piece of equipment chosen and you will find high quality physical, creative and social play opportunities for children regardless of their needs and abilities. Using equipment which is multi-functional and open to all abilities, such as the inclusive roundabout, gives all children the opportunity to play together which is an aspect of childhood, which is very important.

A range of seating will also be added so parents and guardians can come along and share in the children’s play experiences.

Farrans is the lead contractor for the works, while sub-contractor Garden Escapes, a specialist playground equipment company, will supply and install the new equipment.

Communities/schools will be informed about the official opening of each park so watch this space for details!

04 Jun

Poyntzpass has a brand new Play Park which was officially opened by the Lord Mayor recently – and the local community turned out in force to celebrate!

Children from the two local primary schools – Poyntzpass Primary School and St Joseph and St James Primary School – along with community representatives, contractors, elected members and council officials all helped the then Lord Mayor, Alderman Gareth Wilson to cut the ribbon and officially launch the park.

Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council has worked in partnership with Poyntzpass Primary School and the Education Authority to bring this much needed dual use outdoor play area to fruition in Poyntzpass.

During weekdays, the play area will be used by the primary schools up to 3.30pm and will then open to the wider community after this time. It will be open all day at weekends and when the school is off.

With an investment of £75,000, the new park caters for all children up to the age of 14. You will find toddler and junior swings, an inclusive basket swing, see-saw, inclusive roundabout, play panels and multi-play climbing units. A range of seating has also been added so parents and guardians can come along and share in the children’s play experiences.

“This has been another fantastic launch and it was brilliant to see so many members of the local community coming down to celebrate the official opening,” commented the Lord Mayor.

“I am delighted to see the great variety of equipment that ensures the park is accessible for all children to be able to come down and enjoying playing. Play is such an important part of childhood and we, as a council, are delighted to support this.”

Both Principals from the two local schools were pleased to welcome the new play area and in a joint statement said: “We are all delighted to welcome the completion of this wonderful new play park for children in the Poyntzpass area. This park provides significant new opportunities for our children to extend their learning through play and physical activity in the outdoor environment. We have no doubt that local children will fully utilise this exciting new resource – both during the school day and in the evenings and weekends when the park will be open to the public.”

Farrans were the lead contractor for the works, while sub-contractor Garden Escapes, a specialist playground equipment company, supplied and installed the new equipment.

This park, along with 12 others, are just the beginning of a £4.75m Play Strategy which will see a number of parks across the borough being refurbished, alongside our commitment to non-fixed play, which is crucial to child development.

17 May

Three brand new play parks were officially opened across Portadown this week – and around 50 local school children were lucky enough to come along to the openings and play on the new equipment!

The Lord Mayor of Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon, Alderman Gareth Wilson, cut the ribbon at Drumilly Green Play Park, Brownstown Play Park and Killicomaine Play Park, to celebrate the hard work that enabled the first three Play Parks in the Capital Play Development Programme to come to fruition.

After consultation with the local community and schools in each area, a total of £75,000 was invested in each park to completely refurbish the play areas, which now cater for all children up to the age of 14.

At each park you will find toddler and junior swings, an inclusive basket swing, see-saw, inclusive roundabout, play panels and multi-play climbing units. A range of seating has also been added so parents and guardians can come along and share in the children’s play experiences.

Pupils from Hart Memorial, Millington and Edenderry Primary Schools attended the openings and were delighted to be among the first children to try out the new equipment.
“We have had a brilliant day today launching these three fantastic play parks which I know the local community are delighted to have,” commented the Lord Mayor.

“Play is such an important part of childhood – socially, emotionally, physically and educationally – and these brand new parks are a great way to enable children within these areas to get outside into the fresh air and to enjoy themselves. The variety of equipment is marvellous and we have ensured there is something to suit all children – so now all they have to do is play, play play!”

Farrans were the lead contractor for the works, while sub-contractor Garden Escapes, a specialist playground equipment company, supplied and installed the new equipment.
These parks are just the beginning of a £4.75m Play Strategy which will see a number of parks across the borough being refurbished, alongside our commitment to non-fixed play, which is crucial to child development.

16 Apr

Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council will start work this month on implementing a new play strategy that will see some 44 play parks across the borough upgraded at an estimated cost of £4.75m over the next five years.

Delivered as part of a multi-phase rolling refurbishment programme, the council has allocated the first tranche of funding (£450,000) to significantly enhance play provision at six urban and rural locations: Dollingstown, Poyntzpass P.S., Kinnego Marina, Killicomaine Community Centre (Portadown), Drumilly Green (Portadown) and Brownstown Park (Portadown).

This initial outlay is significant in that it marks the launch of ambitious plans by the council to provide children and young people in all parts of the borough with high quality, fully inclusive, safe and accessible play facilities.

Last year, the council undertook a strategic review to assess the condition of play equipment at all 95 play parks in the borough with the assistance of PlayBoard NI.

This review formed the basis of the new play strategy, which outlined a framework for council to advocate for and champion the right to play as well as to identify key priorities for the enhancement of play opportunities.

The play strategy gives due regard to the significant capital investment in new and refurbished play sites to meet the needs of children, parents and the local community in all areas across the borough.

Works at all six play parks will be carried out simultaneously over the next few months in time for summer and deliver a range of improvements including new play equipment, safety surfacing, and fencing where necessary along with landscaping and other groundworks.

Lord Mayor Alderman Gareth Wilson welcomed the announcement, saying, “With access to quality outdoor play provision of paramount importance to a child’s physical, emotional, social and educational development, I’m delighted that we’re investing a significant amount in this area.

Through the delivery of our play strategy, we aim to improve the range and quality of outdoor play facilities, maintain our network of play parks to the highest standard and, most importantly, target our resources at play parks identified as most in need of enhancement.

Right from the start there was a collective will to deliver our play strategy in partnership with schools and local communities who were widely consulted on the improvements at each location. Thanks to everyone who engaged with us at the design stage. Their input has been invaluable in enabling us to ensure the first set of upgraded play parks will offer challenging and stimulating outdoor play experiences.

To ensure the ongoing successful implementation of the new play strategy, we will continue to consult with local communities and encourage parents with young children to take an active role in the development of local play facilities.

A further two phases, scheduled to be completed by March 2019, will see another 12 play parks upgraded with an additional investment of £1.75m – underlining once again the high premium that we, as a council, place on these important amenities.

This will build on the success of similar past projects completed during the council’s first year when it spent £859,000 on providing new play parks in Gilford, Laurencetown, Milford, Mountnorris, Clady, Gosford Forest Park and Banbridge.

Our ambitious programme of improving children’s play parks fits in well with the wider council agenda of enhancing quality of life, bringing communities closer together, and improving health and well-being.”

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