Proposed Playground Extension
(Information for local residents to Lisle Marsden)
In response to Lisle Marsden’s growth over the last 20 years in pupil numbers, the academy now desperately requires additional playground space for the children to access daily, and additional designated space to facilitate PE lessons. Thankfully we have more classrooms to support the increase in pupil numbers but we now don’t have enough adequate playground and suitable outdoor PE/games space to cater for a growing school, soon to be over 600 pupils.
The children at Lisle Marsden need appropriate designated safe space to play; to have fun and socialise with their friends. Our children need additional space to take part in quality active PE lessons where they can experience different sports all year round; a positive space that promotes the benefits of health, being active and wellbeing.
The concept of a MUGA at Lisle Marsden was to simply transform a bare grass area that is currently only accessible for play and PE in the short summer months, into something that could be used for daily play and PE all year round, thus taking significant daily pressure off the existing play and PE facilities. Rather than simply tarmac over grass to create extra ‘yard’ space, the academy believed it could create something much better that could have a positive impact on hundreds of children for many years to come.
Sadly, it appears that the genuine good intentions of the academy have become associated with some of the less desirable outcomes related to more urban based ‘community use projects’. On reflection, if the plans had been submitted as additional ‘playground’ space for the children, it may have helped everyone to fully contextualise and visualise better what we wish and need to achieve.
The space chosen is directly adjacent to the existing junior children’s playground. This was chosen to create a natural expansion area to the existing playground space, ensuring maximum accessibility and pupil movement/flow, within a highly visible area for staff where play and PE can be monitored safely.
The proposal was never intended to create a sports/ games facility that could be accessed by outside organisations or members of the public, or an area designed to create income for the academy. It is regrettable that this was not made clear to members of the public within the planning documentation submitted to N E Lincs.
* We can assure every one, the games/PE/play area will not be open to members of the public.
* It will not have floodlights. There are no plans or need for floodlights today or in the future.
* No additional buildings, changing rooms or physical impact is required alongside the area.
* No trees will be cut down or need to be cut down. There will be no damage or change to any existing hedgerows.
Children already access the area and play there daily in the summer months, and have done so since the school was built. The area has also been used for PE for many years (when weather and ground conditions permit) current use of the area would just become extended across the year as a result of the project. This is not a ‘new’ area, more a change of surface with the addition of fencing to make better and more frequent use of the space.
The area is not near to or visible from the bungalows or other avenues, and can only be overseen by one property in the area.
The type of construction and materials chosen, ensure it can be completed quickly, has natural porous drainage (drains like grass) to prevent problems and run off associated with tarmac.
Fencing the area supports pupil safety and supervision, maintains the security of the site in the evenings and prevents balls/ equipment from escaping the area. Adaptations will be made to the fence to reduce any noise/vibration created from possible ball impact.
We understand residents’ natural frustrations regarding the large daily spike in traffic volume created by the school’s existence and worries that this project could create more. However, it is important to both stress and reassure, that this transformation of a small grassed area will create no additional traffic to Portland Ave, Park Ave or other surrounding roads, as it will only be accessed by existing Lisle Marsden pupils aged 4-11 during normal school opening hours, and by children accessing the Lisle Marsden Child Care Centre.
The academy has no desire to rent or use the facility beyond normal ‘school’ use. The site will not be open at night or the weekend.
Extra-curricular clubs already run on site on some days until 4.30pm, this is established practice. Clubs will not be extended beyond this time.
The area will not be available to or made accessible to the general public. Noise/use levels should therefore be little different from what they currently are.
Local residents who know the school, will know that our children are not outside all day all year round creating disturbance, this facility will enhance and improve existing provision for play and PE at specific times in the school day and will not change what we do.