Caithness Map :: Links to Site Map Great value Unlimited Broadband from an award winning provider  

 

Peanuts To Cover The Highland Council's Playpark Strategy And Action Plan 2023-33

2nd December 2023

Photograph of Peanuts To Cover The Highland Council's Playpark Strategy And Action Plan 2023-33

Highland Council's Playpark Strategy and Action Plan for 2023-2033 was agreed and adopted by members of the Communities and Place Committee on 29 November 2023.

Resource - The service has limited revenue budget for maintenance of £176,900 for all sites. For materials in 2023/24 it is £18,300, which equates to around £57 per playpark, per year. The Scottish Government is providing Councils £60m over the lifetime of the current parliament. The Council's allocation is £2.9m to 2026 and the phasing of this is detailed in appendix 4 of the strategy. There is currently no capital funding identified post 2026 so there is a risk that some playparks may have to close or items of play removed as equipment reaches end of life and cannot be repaired. Thus, securing new capital funding, identifying ways of income generation and working closely with communities to support fund raising etc. are key solutions to deliver medium to long-term sustainability.

Members also noted that an annual update on progress will be reported to the Committee.

The strategy is underpinned by consultations with playpark users and specifically a survey conducted with children which concluded that they want to play locally, they are interested in the environment and want natural play, and inclusivity an accessibility is important to them.

The Scottish Government is providing Councils £60m over the lifetime of the current parliament. The Council's allocation is £2.9m to 2026 and the phasing of this is detailed in Item 9 of today’s report to Members in appendix 4 of the strategy. See https://www.highland.gov.uk/meetings/meeting/4890/communities_and_place_committee

There is currently no capital funding identified after 2026, therefore there may be a possibility that some playparks may have to be closed or items of play removed as equipment reaches end of life and cannot be repaired.

The strategy takes cognisance of those concerns and details that officers will work with communities to identify other income generation streams and will support communities to fundraise. These options are viewed as key solutions to enabling medium to long-term sustainability.

The Strategy proposes a framework for three types of playparks, - neighbourhood, settlement, and destination, which will, over time and as funding is identified, create equality and accessibility in play across Highland.

The Amenities team have also been working with local Members to design a programme for improvement of playparks within each ward across Highland.

There are differences between areas in terms of the number of playparks, the condition, and future requirements. Members have identified the playparks in their areas that will be invested in going forward.

The Amenities team has also developed a web page to support partnership working with local communities by signposting them to funding opportunities, such as the National Lottery, and advising them on suitable equipment choices, site layout and inclusive provisions for playparks.

Chair of the Communities and Place Committee, Cllr Graham MacKenzie, said: "The challenges facing council budgets are well-documented and we do recognise the importance of play and playparks for children, in terms of the benefits they provide to their physical and mental health.

"In addition to the funding we have available we will support, encourage, and work with communities that wish to fundraise to upgrade and enhance their parks. We will look to increase sponsorship and advertising opportunities and continue to investigate additional funding channels going forward."

The Playpark Strategy and Action Plan for 2023-2033 can be found at Item 9 of the report to today’s committee.

 

Related Businesses

 

Related Articles

Yesterday
No Redundancies In Highland Council's 24/25 Budget But Job Reductions Over 3 Years
Highland councillors will meet on 29th February 2024 to agree the proposals set out in the papers published today.   There has been a long period of public consultation on the proposals and although there are unpalatable suggestions they will balance the books.  
Yesterday
Make No Mistake Highland Council Are Going to Make Significant Cuts For Next Two Years At Least
Over £100m investment programme proposed as part of 3-year budget Highland council are about to use significant amounts of reserves to cover shortfalls in the budget for 24/25 and possibly 25/26.   Despite pushing out big figures it disguises the cuts about to fall on Highland services.  
20/2/2024
Primary Strategic Network in Education for Highland
A collaborative network of Head Teachers and Education Officers are working closely together with the goal of improving attainment and achievement in Highland primary schools.   Cllr John Finlayson, Education Chair said: "It is essential that we have strong, consultation and communication strategies in place and there is effective and ongoing collaboration between our schools and our central education service.  
20/2/2024
Flights from Wick Airport - Uncertainty over future funding of Wick Aberdeen Service
The Highland Council is currently unable to confirm whether funding will be available to support the Wick-Aberdeen Public Service Obligation (PSO) after 31st March 2024.   The funding for the PSO is currently provided on the basis of £1.3m annually, with £1m committed by the Scottish Government and £0.3m committed by The Highland Council.  
16/2/2024
Council Announces Thermal Pothole Repair Trial - Thurso One Of The Trial AreasThumbnail for article : Council Announces Thermal Pothole Repair Trial - Thurso One Of The Trial Areas
The Chair of The Highland Council's Economy and Infrastructure Committee has announced that a 3-week trial of a thermal process for pothole repairs will be taking place.   An external contractor, Thermal Road Repairs, has been appointed to undertake the trial before the end of the 2023/24 financial year.  
30/1/2024
Community Regeneration Funding awarded to Caithness groups
Caithness Committee Members today (Monday 29 January 2024) considered and assessed applications submitted to the area's Community Regeneration Fund.   Community Regeneration Funding is an umbrella term for a number of funds that are available for communities/organisations to access in Highland.  
30/1/2024
Roads In Caithness Will Get Worse Caithness Area Committee Admits As Funding Is Inadequate For 2024/25Thumbnail for article : Roads In Caithness Will Get Worse Caithness Area Committee Admits As Funding Is Inadequate For 2024/25
The Council at the Caithness Area Committee agree the roads budget for 2024/25 with exactly the same amount as for 2023/24.   Clearly with rapidly increasing costs this will come nowhere near to maintaining the roads to even the poor condition they are now in.  
25/1/2024
PPP Accounting Flexibility To Be Considered - Short Term Benefit But Long-Term Pain
A briefing has been provided to all members of the Council on an accounting flexibility introduced by Scottish Government and available to Councils to utilise in 2022/23 or 2023/24.   A number of reports to Council in recent months have covered this topic, and a number of other Councils have utilised the flexibility in 2022/23 or are considering doing so in 2023/24.  
18/1/2024
Highland Road Conditions Report - Thursday 18 January 2024 - Caithness Main Roads PassableThumbnail for article : Highland Road Conditions Report - Thursday 18 January 2024 - Caithness Main Roads Passable
The information provided is a summary of reports from operational staff and is intended to give a general indication of typical conditions in each area at a point in time.   It is not intended to imply that any individual route is entirely snow and ice free and drivers must be aware that conditions can change rapidly and make their own assessment of conditions for travelling.  
19/1/2024
Thurso and Wick High Schools Closed on Friday 19th January
Weather is still hitting school transport services around the county.   Wick Unfortunately we have made the decision to close the school tomorrow, Friday 19th January, due to the ongoing snowfall and hazardous road conditions.