Disappointment as vandals target new playspace within days of opening
Vandals have targeted the all-new all abilities playground in Rose Point Park, less than a week after it was unveiled to the community.
Singleton Council opened the gates on the innovative playspace last Thursday, with the first NEOS 360 for any NSW council offering 360 degrees of electronic games for head-spinning, body-twisting fun – as well as building peripheral vision, auditory and spatial awareness skills.
Other equipment includes a xylophone, tactile tree, a spinner/rocker zone, a family-sized seesaw and a bumble bee that really buzzes. A cosy cocoon is tailored to support children with autism who may be overwhelmed by all the colour and activity in the park.
Mark Ihlein, Council’s Director Planning and Infrastructure Services, said the all abilities playground and sensory garden were the first two stages in a five stage development for the park, all funded by $879,820 from the NSW Government’s $200 million Stronger Country Communities Fund.
Work is underway on the further stages, but the vandalism is a blow to Council staff working on the project in the wake of the high level of excitement among Council staff and the community for the opening.
“This incident of vandalism is not acceptable and we are really, really disappointed with this element in our community,” Mr Ihlein said.
“Significant effort has gone into delivering this particular project to provide facilities for children of all abilities, and it was a project our parks and gardens crew was excited to deliver.
“It is an understatement to say these incidents cut to the heart of our community and the families who benefit from this playground, in particular children with special needs.
“Singleton has proven to be an industry leader in playspaces, and we want the community to take ownership of these places for the benefit of our residents and the visitors they attract to our area.
“If anyone sees anyone engaging in anti-social behaviour or causing damage to any community asset, please contact the police immediately.”