Ryland Road brand new play area now open

Published: 09/02/2023
Rylands Road play area

Photo credit: Ellie Crook

Rylands Road play area, situated on Rylands Road, Bockhanger, Ashford, is now officially open after a revamp following a £340,000 investment.

The brand new play area allows children of all ages and abilities lots of exciting options to play and have fun including a new multiplay unit for toddlers, trampolines and play panels, a large junior multiplay unit with a slide, large climbing unit, springers, teacup dipper and bouncing spinners, a disability friendly roundabout and a range of different swings.

Rylands Road play area

Photo credit: Ellie Crook

The new play area facilities join the outdoor gym equipment, which were installed last year from funding raised by the local community with grants from Kennington Community Council and Ashford Leisure Trust.

The play area has improved path networks, and the footprint of the new play area has been increased to accommodate the new equipment, including a new multiuse games area for football and basketball. Now the play area has been completed work will begin on the new multiuse games area in the coming weeks, and is expected to be completed in the spring.

There are brand new benches and picnic tables in the play zones. New cycle racks are planned in the next few weeks to allow families to cycle to the park and lock up their bikes while enjoying the new facilities.

Rylands Road play area

Photo credit: Ellie Crook

Inclusive play option for all ages and abilities were key in the design and in consultation with residents, local ward members, the Rylands Road Park Renovation Group and Kennington Community Council.

The investment for this play area is part of the council’s £1.1m Playground Regeneration Programme; approved in September 2021 for three new play areas in the borough, Central Park, Park Farm, Spearpoint Recreation Ground, Kennington and Rylands Road, Kennington.

A further £200,000 will be spent on improvements across a number of play areas installing new individual items of play equipment. More information will be shared once a timeline of works are confirmed.

November 2022 saw the opening of Central Park, Park Farm, including a sensory zone, multi tower multiplay unit, a range of swings, including a basket swing and multi person rope swing. Further work is ongoing to install a new wheelchair swing and plans to paint new surface markings in the outdoor gym area for shuttle runs, power jumping, etc. when the weather improves.

Spearpoint Recreation Ground, Kennington, is still currently under construction but we will be sharing more information very soon when the work is closer to completion.

Cllr Matthew Forest, Portfolio Holder for Environment, Property and Recreation for Ashford Borough Council said “We received overwhelming support for the new brand new facilities during the consultations with the local community.

“Accessibility for all age groups and abilities has been key throughout all our recent play area investments to improve the health and wellbeing of all our residents, which are reflected in the vast range of play opportunities.”

“I am pleased to see another brand new play area now open giving families’ access to high quality outdoor recreation in their local community.”