Next generation need investment say mums

JPCT 03-10-12 S12410534X Beech Road South Roffey two mums fighting to get playground renovated. Lynne Tumber and Brayden Vertigan 15 months -photo by steve cobb
JPCT 03-10-12 S12410534X Beech Road South Roffey two mums fighting to get playground renovated. Lynne Tumber and Brayden Vertigan 15 months -photo by steve cobb

Two Roffey mums have embarked on a campaign to get a 25-year-old playground made safe and updated for young children in the area.

Lynne Tumber and Michelle Downey, both from Sycamore Avenue, have had discussions with Horsham District Council over accessing funding for the Beech Road children’s playground, which they feel is unfit for use.

The current playground, as well as the playing fields and adventure playground for older children is owned by HDC, but the two mums think transferring it to North Horsham Parish Council might be the most viable step forward.

Michelle said: “The council officer was just disinterested. ‘I see what you are saying, but we do not have any money’ he said.

“We do not want anything special, but we just want something safe.”

Lynne has a 15-month-old son Brayden, and said that fresh air and exercise was important to stimulate young children.

Former midwife, nurse, and health adviser Michelle, who has two children, George 2, and Libby 4, has campaigned on the issue for the last two-and-a-half years.

The roof on the main play area was taken off after it was vandalised, and the swings were removed, before being reinstated this summer.

Heather Playfoot, from Beech Road, campaigned to have the original playground built over two decades ago.

“Over the years its served a great purpose, but we are talking about 25 years ago,” she said.

“It’s served well for 25 years, but it’s time to reinvest for the next generation.”

A spokesperson for HDC said that the play area was an existing priority, and was in need of an update. While the authority hoped to start improvements in the spring they also admitted the scale of the fundraising challenge was large.

To get involved visit the group’s ‘Beech Road Small Children’s Park’ Facebook page.