Park to close for major improvements

Brought to you by the News Post Leader.
Brought to you by the News Post Leader.

A Bedlington park will close its gates next week while major improvement work gets under way.

Doctor Pit Park will be closed for four weeks from Monday for the next stage of regeneration work.

Northumberland County Council is working with the local community to improve the facilities available at the park and the whole site will be closed to the public during this time.

The work will involve footpath improvements, removing redundant fences and old concrete play equipment foundations.

Existing planted areas will be improved and new ones created.

A number of new trees will be planted and a central seating area surrounded by planting is also planned. Spring bulbs will be planted in the grass areas.

Coun Ian Swithenbank, cabinet member for local services at the county council, said: “These major improvements are set to make a huge difference to the park.

“This phase of the work will involve a lot of groundworks throughout the park, which will require the frequent movement of plant and machinery, use of car parks and other areas for materials and there will be a number of different contractors operating in relatively confined areas.

“The decision to close fully was not taken lightly and our primary concerns in this has been to ensure the safety of park users. We will be getting the work done as quickly as possible during what is a relatively quiet time of year for the park so hopefully it will keep disruption to a minimum.

“Our teams will be reviewing the progress on a weekly basis with a view to reopening the park as soon as possible.”

Council staff have put notices up around the park and alerted the local school so that parents and carers can arrange alternative routes to school.

Funding for improvements to the park has come from a number of sources, including the local members improvement schemes budgets of Couns Alyson Wallace and Val Tyler, the Banks Mining Community Fund, the Suez Environmental Trust, the county council and contributions to sport and play that have come about as a result of S106 legal agreements.

In a further phase of work, a new multi use games area (MUGA) and a basket swing is due to be installed in the early spring once this phase of the works is complete.