Redbridge Council leader backs Aldersbrook Playground Campaign

PUBLISHED: 13:00 10 January 2016 | UPDATED: 13:06 10 January 2016

The Temple Wanstead Park. Photo: City of London Corporation

The Temple Wanstead Park. Photo: City of London Corporation

Clare Eastwood

Parents inspired by a crowdfunded playground revamp are hoping to launch a completely new play area for children.

The Aldersbrook Playground Campaign is pushing to secure space at Wanstead Park, Warren Road, Wanstead, following the success of the Wanstead Playground Association, which has raised almost £100,000 and is on course to create a new play area at Christchurch Green, Wanstead.

The Aldersbrook group’s chairwoman Jo Blackman is hoping a petition with more than 400 signatures could persuade City of London, which owns the land, to allow room for play equipment made from natural materials.

“We haven’t done any fundraising yet because we haven’t got a site,” said mum-of-two Jo, 36.

“There have been campaigns in the past that haven’t been successful, but this time we’re proposing to use natural play equipment – it’s made from wood logs, not plastic or metal and it keeps in with the natural environment.

“We’ve had support from councillors and MPs and we’ve had hundreds of people showing an interest – people really recognise the need for a play area so it’s really promising.”

Redbridge Council leader Cllr Jas Athwal said he was committed to helping the campaign after he visited the park in October and attended a City of London board meeting last month.

“I went to their board meeting to put the case forward and they were very receptive, and that’s what I expected,” he said.

“I went with the single aim of making the board realise that local people are serious about getting a play area.

“I will carry on campaigning for it,” he added.

Jo said the proposed play area would make a “huge difference” to young families in the area.

She added: “We hope to see progress soon so that children living in Aldersbrook can access play equipment without having to get in the car or take a bus.”

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