Number of play parks to be cut?

THE NUMBER of play areas across Angus look likely to be cut by 50 per cent ,including seven in the Brechin and Edzell area that have been earmarked for closure.

Angus Council’s neighbourhood services committee will meet today (Thursday) to discuss proposals to reduce play area numbers in Angus from 100 down to 50.

The proposals, which, if agreed to by the committee, will be subject to a public consultation to inform of the final proposals and to seek views on the potential future use of any cleared areas.

In Brechin the number of play areas could drop from 11 to just four, a drop of almost 64 per cent. This will take the number of play equipment items down from 73 pieces of equipment to just 41, a reduction of 44 per cent.

Play parks which could disappear as part of the plans would be: Cookston Crescent, Drumachlie Park, Durriehill Place, Edzell Muir trim trail, Hillview, Mountskip and Wards Park. Leaving parks at Edzell Muir, Inch Park, Public Park and Tarfside village.

It could mean good news for users of Brechin’s Inch Park. It has been earmarked to be retained and it has been noted that the park would need upgrading.

In his report to the neighbourhood services committee, director Ron Ashton said: “Due to the ongoing budget reductions facing Angus Council, there is the ever increasing need to reduce costs, including those associated with the maintenance and replacement of the overall physical assets held by the council.

“Play parks, in particular, require daily and weekly safety inspection of each individual item of play equipment and associated surfacing to ensure the safety of users.

“In addition, many of the older play areas are now causing issues, in particular, at play areas that no longer offer today’s expectations of play value.”

The potential future use of any cleared areas may include community ownership and all sites will be reinstated as necessary to match the exiting surrounding surfacing.