An area in Hunslet once blighted by anti-social behaviour has been redeveloped into a safe play space and recreation area for existing families and residents of a new council housing development.
Over the summer, 25 two and three bedroom houses were handed over to the council at Garnet Grove and now house new tenants. Forming part of the authority’s housing growth programme which has seen over 600 new homes built across the city in the past six years, the new homes benefit from solar panels, high levels of insulation, energy efficient glazing and heating systems to help reduce running costs.
The park, created by the council’s Parks and Countryside service and project managed by Groundwork Leeds, is one of three sites to be delivered in partnership with Kier and designed by NPS Group. Opened in October, the park offers welcome space for both existing and new residents who have recently moved into the new council homes.
Cllr Debra Coupar, Leeds City Council executive member for communities said:
“I’m pleased to see how resident’s ideas have helped create a place where both existing and new families in the area can meet and get to know each other and their children can play safely.
“This new development just shows what can be achieved when residents, the council and partners such as Kier, Groundwork and NPS all work together.”
Local resident Miss Swift of Garnet Place, said:
“Our new house is amazing, it’s so spacious and really homely, we’re starting to feel how warm it is now it’s getting a bit cooler. We’ve never had a garden before and one of the first things we did was to buy a barbeque and paddling pool.”
It was originally planned that an existing playground on Tunstall Road would be refurbished but after consultation with local residents it was agreed the former pocket park within the estate would be a better option for a new play space and the old playground cleared.
This involved opening up of the pocket park, removal of some of the planting, addition of low level shrubs, a grassed area and toddler play equipment and low level fence for the safety of users.
Thermoplastic markings were added to encourage children to make up their own games.
Remaining funding has been used to secure Hunslet Moor from unauthorised vehicles and a contribution provided for the extension of the playground at Cross Flatts.