Working hard to ensure children will be able to swing, spin and rock again

Torbay Weekly

Swing, slide, climb, spin – these are moves which have an important role in building core strength and gross and fine motor skills in children.

Probably not a coincidence then that they are also movements that need to be used when playing on playground equipment.

Two people who know a bit about play are SWISCo’s Community Park Rangers.

As qualified playground inspectors, part of their remit is to slide, swing, spin, and climb on the play equipment in parks across the Bay.

It’s a tough job, but someone’s got to do it!

Of course, the serious side to all this is to check the play equipment is safe and in good working order.

With all the use that our play parks get, it’s not surprising that parts get worn out, and the rangers often come across damage caused by general wear and tear.

Take the play area in Primley Park, Paignton, where a new roundabout and swing basket are needed.

In this instance, Clifton and Maidenway Community Partnership have chosen to use a portion of the Ward Councillors’ Fund to replace these items, meaning that children and families that visit the park will be able to swing, spin and rock again soon.

Unfortunately, occasionally the Community Park Rangers come across damage that has been wilfully done.

A recent visit to Primley resulted in the removal of the two swing seats, as the hard rubber had been chewed and they were no longer safe.

The culprit: a dog - meaning that the rubber seat had literally been chewed away by someone’s pet, quite likely under the owner’s encouragement.

Sadly, not only is this the second time it has happened at Primley this year, but the rangers have come across similar damage in other parks around the Bay.

The rangers are sourcing new seats for Primley and will install them as soon as they can.

They will of course have a swing themselves - just to test them!

To find out more about how you can get involved in caring for Torbay Green Spaces, please contact Hannah Worthington by email