30 July 2011

Peckham Rye Playground Opens

Gavin and I were delighted to open the new playground on Peckham Rye this morning - and to test out the equipment! The opening marked a long year of campaigning to get the playground built after many years of delay.

As locals and regular visitors to the Rye may know, the new playground has been in the pipeline for some time. To make matters worse, back in August 2010, the Tory-Lib Dem Government ‘clawed back’ most of the funding for the project, leaving its future in doubt. Following a lot of hard work we are really pleased that in the end we secured the funding and that the work has been completed - just in time for the school holidays.

During the election last year we made a firm promise that we would get the playground sorted-out. Today has been brilliant because, despite Government cuts we have kept our promise and local children have another great area for play.


  1. It's lovely to see the new playground opening, but unfortunately there seem to be a quite a few aspects of it that haven't been very well thought through.

    The lack of a fence means dogs can run in and small children can run out. Obviously parents should keep an eye on their kids but I don't think I'd feel happy using the area with two mobile children or letting a toddler play there while nursing a baby.

    The playground is right next to the one o'clock club for pre-school children, actually I think it's taken some space from the old one o'clock club playground, but the new equipment is more suited to older children. It seems odd to have taken space from the toddlers play area to make more provision for older children, when there are already more facilities for them in the park.

    The water gully is a really nice feature and would be great fun for younger children, but the tap and button to make the water flow is inside the one o'clock club fence. So the older children who can use the rest of the new equipment can't get at the tap without coming through the gate (risking smaller children escaping) and younger children in the club just seem to be getting soaked and can't really play in the gully without going in to the unfenced area. Also, today the water seemed to be pooling halfway along the gully as it looked like it had to travel up hill to go the full length!

    It would be a real shame if this new area doesn't live up to it's potential and in fact reduces facilities in the park for younger children. I hope that now it's open and these problems have been spotted there is still some opportunity for improvement.

    You might also like to have a look at the East Dulwich forum where quite a few other parents have been commenting on this: http://www.eastdulwichforum.co.uk/forum/read.php?29,714619

  2. Thanks for comments SouthwarkBelle. Just responded on the forum.


  3. This is a badly designed childrens playground.

    We spent some time on Sunday at the new unfenced childrens play area at Peckham Rye One o'clock club.
    The children loved it, unfortunately the stream feature had overflowed creating a muddy wallow. This was due to essentially bad design- a low bridge which created a dam when it quickly became clogged with debris underneath, combined with inadequate hard landscaping along the banks.

    We walked past the play area on Monday and to my huge annoyance man with hat was examining the mud slick and then commenced to barricade it.

    Is this worth complaining about? Yes! Were no lessons learned from the redesign of Goose Green playground, which quickly turned into a Glastonbury type mudfest (loved by children, feared by parents)?

    There is no excuse, this is a complete waste of our money to now have to fix this, as you had to do with Goose Green.

    I would be very interested to hear from you on this.

  4. Hi Annoyed Parent,

    As you'll see from the post on EDF, I'm looking into the tap and fence issue, but as I also said there, despite these problems, I think the playground is a great new facility for Peckham Rye. Lots and lots of parents spoke to us the other day to say how good they thought it was.

    I'm working on the tap and fence issue and I'll report back both here and on EDF when I hve some answers. Could you tell me who the "man with hat" is?

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  6. Hi Yanka. I know there are some things that need sorting with the playground, and I've just posted again on EDF regarding the fence and the tap. But I think your comments are OTT to say the very least. I've been down to the playground a couple of times since it opened and both times there were lots of kids and parents enjoying the new facilities. It wouldn't have happened without lots of hard work. To you it's "only a playground", but to lots of local people it's a welcome addition to our area.

    As for initiatives to raise more money from other sources - easier said than done. However, if you've got any ideas I'm all ears...

  7. Thanks for your reply, Gavin. I guess my comments could have been a little ott. That's possibly due to the disappointment after much anticipation of a new play area suitable for toddlers. Lets wait and see how its going to be like once its finished. I'm sure ott or not oot, comments made here will make a difference. And that's all we want, right?!

  8. Agreed. Comments and feedback always make a positive difference, just think keeping things in perspective is important too.

    PS. Posted another update on EDF today following site visit with council officer