Work begins on Sconce and Devon play park developments

Posted on: Monday, September 18, 2023

Newark and Sherwood District Council’s near £350,000 investment into play park improvements is well underway as work begins at Sconce and Devon Park in Newark.

Developments at the Green Flag Award-winning park include two new areas for play and fitness, the plans for which were shared with residents during a public consultation in March 2023.

The castle-themed play park, a nod to Newark’s Civil War history, is being built as an exciting new space for children and their parents and carers to enjoy the outdoors and will be an additional area at the park for little ones to have fun in a safe and free space.

A fantastic new Fitness Zone is also being built at the park. Sconce and Devon is already a popular destination in the district for fitness and wellbeing activities, such as walking, park runs, or small personal training classes, and the new development will add to that as a free outdoor fitness facility for all visitors to use.

The public consultation, hosted during the planning phase of the development, allowed the District Council to chat through plans with residents and hear their thoughts about the proposals. The feedback and ideas shared helped the Council to shape the plans to best improve the local area with the residents at the heart of its decision.

The improvements are being made as part of Newark and Sherwood District Council’s commitment to modernise, develop and extend a number of the district’s play park areas and equipment during 2023.

Ten parks are undergoing improvements between August and October, including Vicar Water Country Park in Clipstone, Mead Way Play Park in Balderton, Lincoln Road Recreation Ground Play Area in Newark, Thorpe Oaks Play Area in Coddington, Hillcote Drive in Clipstone, Old Tannery Drive in Lowdham, Grove Street Play Area in Newark, Cleveland Square in Newark, Turner Lane in Boughton and Sconce and Devon Park in Newark. Work has already been completed at Lincoln Road Recreation Ground Play Area in Newark and Cleveland Square in Newark.

The plans to replace aging equipment for new, imaginative pieces of play equipment and include inclusive play equipment for all ability users where possible to do so were approved earlier this year.

Councillor Emma Oldham, Portfolio Holder for Biodiversity and Environmental Services at Newark and Sherwood District Council, said: “Our investment into our district’s play parks is well underway, and it is very exciting to see the work beginning at Sconce and Devon, a space that is well loved in Newark and Sherwood.

Our parks and green spaces are important for the health and wellbeing of our community, and we know that having safe and fun places on your doorstep to take children to enjoy is a big part of that. The new castle-themed play equipment at Sconce play park is a fantastic way to link children to our bespoke heritage. I hope it ignites fun and creative play! I also hope the free Fitness Zone is a fun change of scenery for those who regularly use gyms, and can provide a welcoming space for those who want to exercise using equipment but may find traditional gym settings intimidating”

The developments support the District Council’s ambition to be greener, with materials for the projects being sourced from recycled goods. Materials such as used textiles, food packaging waste, and used plastic bags, for example, will be used in the improvements. This sustainable sourcing of materials was successfully implemented for the recent development of the Queen Elizabeth Memorial Garden, in which a number of features were built using recycled materials including new bin stores and bug hotels made from fly-tipped wood that had been cleared from illegally dumped waste around the district.

The District Council is committed to developing an ongoing cycle of investment into its local play parks and it is hoping that the improvements could also help to improve similar sites in the district.

Results from the latest resident survey showed residents placing more importance on local parks and green spaces during recent times, and these investments will further the work the District Council has committed to within its Community Plan, including enhancing the district’s natural environment to improve the health and wellbeing of local residents.

Watch this video to find out more about the play park improvements: 

To find out more about the District Council’s Community Plan visit: