Have your say on play area improvements across Hackney

Hackney residents are invited to have their say on new design proposals inspired by local children and families for play areas in four Hackney parks. The proposals aim to be accessible and inclusive, provide exciting opportunities to experience risk and challenge, and offer a variety of play experiences to meet a wide range of interests and needs. 

The consultation launched this month is part of a £2 million investment by the Council to improve park play areas across the borough and make Hackney a more fun and exciting place for children.

Residents have the opportunity to offer their thoughts on ideas for the following park play areas before Thursday 31 March:

  • On Clapton Common (E5), we are proposing to replace the existing climbing structure, which is coming to the end of its life, with a brand new and more robust play structure, with more swings, and another new climbing structure and roundabout for younger children in the fenced play area. 
  • On Hackney Downs (E5), we would like to expand the existing play area, making space to meet the needs of older as well as younger children. Our plans for the installation of additional equipment and landscaping are inspired by the existing wild animal mosaic at the heart of the play area. New equipment could include more swings, climbing structures, a bigger sandpit and wide slide and tree planting to create some shade in the summer months. 
  • In Stonebridge Gardens (aka Snake Park) (E8), we aim to retain the much loved giant snake and basket swings and create more opportunities for climbing and imaginative play. Also under consideration is the addition of swings outside of the play areas. 
  • On Well Street Common (E9), we are focusing on meeting the needs of local communities in harmony with the open character of the common. The design is centred around a play mound with a wide slide and play tunnel surrounded by a stone circle and is complemented by additional swings, a roundabout and a wooden climbing frame, all enclosed with meadow planting for beauty, colour and biodiversity. 

The designs for each play area have been developed using feedback from local children, young people, carers and families who outlined what they liked, disliked, and what could be improved in each space. 

Cllr Caroline Woodley, Cabinet Member for Families, Early Years, Parks and Play

We are delighted to offer a rolling programme of play area refurbishment, which kicked off last year with Springfield Park, Clapton Pond, Haggerston Park, Clapton Square, Stoke Newington Common and Butterfield Green and continues in 2022 with another phase of consultations around improvements to Clapton Common, Stonebridge Gardens, Hackney Downs and Well St Common play areas. Clapton Pond is the first play area to be completed and has received a really great response, but there is so much more work underway, all with exciting and inclusive new features for local children to enjoy. 

If you use any of these play areas I encourage you to get involved and give us your feedback on the ideas and designs so we can continue making the changes we know our residents want to see.

Cllr Caroline Woodley, Cabinet Member for Families, Early Years, Parks and Play

In 2021 Hackney residents were asked for their views on design proposals for a new splash pad at Clissold Park and six play areas in Hackney parks. The consultation led to a number of changes to the proposals, added equipment and improved designs. 

The Clapton Pond play area has been completely transformed following a £60,000 investment by the Council to deliver the facilities local people wanted, including new features: a big bird climbing frame, a wide slide, a mound with a play tunnel, a duck rocker  and landscaping. The play area will provide more opportunities for local children to be more active and create a strong identity for the park.

To view the new designs and to have your say on the proposals, visit: www.hackney.gov.uk/parks