Ward River Valley Park playground
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River Valley View, Swords, Co. Dublin
"THE Ward River Valley playground, one of the largest and oldest playgrounds in the town will be completely removed over the next couple of months and there is no sign of a replacement despite a new playground popping up in Boroimhe recently. The beleaguered residents of west Swords who have seen themselves disenfranchised by a move of constituency and bereft of badly needed community facilities have suffered another blow with the loss of their playground. The playground failed to meet new health and safety standards and with no cash in the council coffers to replace it, it has been demolished leaving only open space in its wake. Two locations nearby were being looked at for two smaller playgrounds but the council says there are no capital funds to proceed with that plan. Cllr Eugene Coppinger (SP) raised the issue at a meeting of the Swords Balbriggan Area Committee and said that this area of Swords was being neglected while 'other areas like Malahide and over in Dublin 15 are getting facilities for children'. He said he feared the playground would not be replaced until ' the twelfth of never' but asked that money be set aside for next year for some kind of alternative facility in the area. 'Residents of the area are not happy with the situation and it is not acceptable to them,' the Socialist Party councillor said. Cllr Darragh Butler (FF) said he had raised the same issue last month and got the same disappointing reply. 'I can't help get the feeling we are being the poor cousin to Malahide once again,' he said. Cllr Butler suggested that two smaller playgrounds either side of the valley was the preferred option for a replacement. Cllr Tom Kelleher (Lab) said that even a small facility that could be added to over time would be welcome and combined with a new access to the valley park at the Lord Mayor's, it would make a ' huge difference to the kids in the area'. Meanwhile, as residents close to the Ward River Valley Park were lamenting the loss of their local playground, neighbours in Boroimhe were welcoming a new playground to their estate. Answering a query from Cllr Tom Kelleher (Lab), the council said the playground in Boroimhe was 'essentially complete' and was constructed as part of a planning enforcement and compliance process. The local authority said: ' The playground is essentially complete. Regulatory signage was installed last week and some minor repair work around the edges of the access path remains to be done. ' This may not be achievable until the weather improves early next year.' The council added: 'We have advised the contractor to keep the fencing in place until the works are fully complete. ' The playground remains the responsibility of the developer until the Deeds of Dedication for the open spaces in the estate are transferred to Fingal County Council. 'We have indicated that we are willing to facilitate that process without any further delay once the playground is fully complete. ' The larger open spaces will be taken in charge by Fingal County Council on completion of these works and the transfer of the Deeds of Dedication.'" independent.ie
How to get there: Bus: 33, 41, 41b
Entry is free
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