Site: Mill Lane Play Area, Barrow upon Soar, LE12 8PY

Client: Barrow upon Soar Parish Council

Budget: £90,000

Age Range: All Ages & Abilities

Date Opened: 21-February-2022

Ranges: Aquatica, Origin

Proludic was delighted to help shape and deliver an exemplary themed playground with a local client that comprises elements from what we do best for Barrow-upon-soar that was truly inspired by the local surroundings – namely the River Soar with its meandering waterway path, canal boats, wildlife such as ducks and glistening lily pads.

As the Mill Lane play area was due for a refurbishment, the client wanted something different from the play areas they already have in the area. In particular, they wanted to refurbish a tired play area for children up to the age of 12 whilst creating something with a unique identity that also included some natural elements. As well as being visually enticing with engaging equipment, the bespoke playground needed to address practical requirements such as having fencing around the play area to enhance the safety of young children as the site is close to the River Soar. In addition, the site needed to be accessible so a linking pathway from the top of the site was implemented for ease of access for pushchairs and wheelchairs.

Proludic worked with Barrow upon Soar Parish Council to accommodate their ideas to form the basis of their proposed playground design. Our aim for this project was to deliver an engaging site that was also challenging for the use of children of all ages and abilities. Proludic proposed a themed play area using new innovative equipment with a nautical-themed centrepiece. personalised with bespoke touches in the design to reference ties to the local area.

Proludic drew inspiration from the river, nature and history in the local area. The river and nature were replicated into the thermographic and wetpour surfacing of the play area with graphics of lily pads, creatures that inhabit the area and a winding river running throughout the length of the play area. This is all brought together with a large boat multiplay unit which had the colours adapted to resemble the nearby canal boats. The canal boat was also adapted to include a plaque to showcase its name ‘The Barrow Kipper’. It was named after the remains of a Plesiosaur fossil (originally named Plesiosaurus macrocephalus) found in Barrow upon Soar in 1851, known as the Barrow Kipper.

We also provided a story time area outside the play space for children to take a break from playing in the fenced area. Whether children are looking for a rest or a quiet space that is still close enough to take part by observing other children while also taking time away from the main hustle and bustle of the play space. This is ideal for children with cognitive conditions such as autism.

The design was presented back to them in a concept booklet and fly through which the Parish Council found useful in enabling them to visualise the finished area.

We contacted several different play park installation companies, gave them the same brief and Proludic produced the best plans. Not only did they produce two-dimensional plans, but they produced a video showing a flythrough of what the park might be like when it was fully installed…..Proludic was a very professional company. They produced plans and layouts to a very timely timetable.

Anne Beckett, Parish Councillor for Barrow upon Soar

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