Published Monday, 30th January 2023

Reigate & Banstead Borough Council is undertaking improvement works in two of its popular playgrounds as part of its ongoing investment in the borough’s play facilities.

UPDATED: 6 February 2023

  • A new sensory play zone has been installed in the Priory Park play area
  • In February, work is due to start on a major upgrade of the play area in Lady Neville Recreation Ground, Banstead, and the installation of a new scooter park.

The works are timed to take place at the time of year when there are usually fewer visitors to the play areas.

Lady Neville Recreation Ground play area to get major upgrade

The major upgrade of the Lady Neville Recreation Ground play area in Banstead will see ocean waste and recycled plastic transformed into more than 65 new play features.

Designed to excite and challenge children of all ages and abilities, the play area will include a toddler play zone and a high play tower with bridge links, platforms, nets and slides. A further play tower with accessible wheelchair ramp, inclusive carousel and multi seesaw are just some of the play features that will make this play area one of the most inclusive anywhere in the country.

Cllr Natalie Bramhall, Executive Member for Neighbourhood Services says: “It’s important that all children can benefit from free, healthy, outdoor activity and our Greenspaces Team works hard to design play areas to entertain children of different ages and abilities. Investing in attractive, inclusive equipment encourages young people to socialise and test themselves in a safe environment.

“Of course, first and foremost play areas need to be fun, but they can also have a serious message; so I’m particularly excited that the new Lady Neville Park play area is serious about creating a greener future for the children who use it.”

Reducing the carbon emissions usually associated with traditional playgrounds, the new play area will showcase recycling in action. Colour coded equipment will make it easy to identify parts made from 100% ocean waste (such as discarded fishing nets), and parts made from recycled food packaging.

Ray Parker from Kompan, the company designing and installing the new play area, says: “We want to be part of a brighter future for our children and take the responsibility of lowering carbon emissions seriously. Traditionally, more than 80 per cent of a play area’s carbon emission comes from the raw materials, but the majority of the equipment you will see at the Lady Neville Play Area will be made from sustainable recycled materials, such as ocean plastic; and 95 per cent will be recyclable after use.”

The installation of the new play area is expected to start 20 February and take approximately three weeks. Whilst the play area is closed, the nearest alternative play areas are:

  • Woodmansterne play area, Woodmansterne Street, Woodmansterne, Surrey, SM7 3NL
  • Beecholme Play area, Osier Way, Banstead, Surrey, SM7 1LL
  • Lakers Rise play area, Lakers Rise, Woodmansterne, Surrey, SM7 3JX

At the same time as the major refurbishment of the play area, a new scooter park will also be installed at Lady Neville Recreation Ground next to the tennis courts. The existing table tennis table will be moved a few metres to allow space for the new 10m by 20m scooter park, which will be designed with road markings that include a mini roundabout. 

Priory Park Sensory Play area

A new and inclusive sensory play zone is underway at the popular Priory Park play area.

The new equipment, which includes musical instruments and sensory play panels, was installed by Reigate & Banstead Borough Council’s Greenspaces Team. New planting, designed to be highly visual and aromatic will follow in the early spring in time for the flowering season.

The sensory play area was inspired by a resident’s visit to one of Cllr Mark Brunt’s regular Leader’s Surgeries. He says: “When I was approached about the need for a more natural and inclusive play area for disabled children, I was keen to champion the request and pleased that the Council was able to support it.

“Now the new equipment is on the way, I’m looking forward to seeing the sensory elements develop over time and enhance the existing play area with their sounds, smells, sights and textures.”

The sensory play area is being funded through the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL), a charge on developers to contribute towards infrastructure and services in the areas they build new developments.

Further information

Please check our website and social media for up-to-date information about all playground works.

The Council’s ongoing programme of investment in its free outdoor play facilities recognises how important they are for children’s physical development and mental health. Thousands of young people and their parents and carers visit the borough’s 40 plus play areas and skate parks each year.