The brand new, state-of-the-art, and truly unique play park at Oxford Island was officially opened last week with a special ribbon-cutting ceremony by Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon’s Lord Mayor.
Opened to the public earlier in the year and enjoyed by families far and wide, the new Oxford Island play park was officially opened by Lord Mayor Councillor Paul Greenfield along with the help of contractors, elected members and council officials.
The fabulous play park – which overlooks the stunning Lough Neagh and blends into the beautiful forest surroundings – is completely bespoke to Oxford Island National Nature Reserve, reflecting the diverse range of local plant and animal life throughout its one-of-a-kind design.
The conservation-inspired facility combines nature with play to bring about a whole new experience for children, as well as parents, grandparents, and carers. At the play park, you will find the traditional pieces of equipment including swings, slides, and a roundabout as well as multi-feature wooden beams, mounds to climb, clamber stacks, bridges, rope climbing, sliding poles, lower-level trampolines, steppingstones, tunnels, interactive panels and so much more.
The play park also features a ramp in the centre of the playground, which is designed to bring children in wheelchairs right into the heart of play and to a completely different level of the park, allowing them to truly be immersed in the fun and action.
Speaking at the play park’s official opening, Lord Mayor Councillor Paul Greenfield said:
“Although the weather wasn’t on our side last week, I was absolutely delighted to officially open the superb and truly special Oxford Island Play Park on behalf of council. Already a huge success since its soft opening earlier in the year, this amazing facility has conservation, biodiversity and play right at its heart; offering children an unrivalled play experience as well as helping them develop so many physical, mental, and social skills.
“Years of researching, planning, and developing have gone into making this play park completely unique to Oxford Island – and more than that, unique across the world! We are also exceptionally proud to be leading the way in Northern Ireland with our Play Strategy, which actively champions play to help improve understanding of its critical importance to children and young people.”
Designed and created by Proludic – a company with over 30 years’ experience creating original equipment and intelligent playground designs – this district play park forms part of council’s £4.75m Play Strategy, which will see a number of parks across the borough being refurbished, alongside our commitment to non-fixed play, which is crucial to child development.
For more information, contact Joan Noade, Play Development Officer at Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council on 07515 607 472.