WISBECH: Critics of £800,000 play scheme for Waterlees urged to change their minds

By MAGGIE GIBSON CRITICS of an £800,000 new playground for 8 to 13 year-olds in Wisbech were told this week that its completion could help stamp out anti social behaviour. It is one way of giving youngsters something to do who might otherwise be dragged

By MAGGIE GIBSON

CRITICS of an £800,000 new playground for 8 to 13 year-olds in Wisbech were told this week that its completion could help stamp out anti social behaviour.

"It is one way of giving youngsters something to do who might otherwise be dragged into anti-social behaviour," said Councillor David Wheeler.

He pleaded with those opposed to the Waterlees Field play area to "come and join us and we will allay your fears."


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He was speaking after some elderly residents expressed the fear that noise from the playground might make their lives a misery. They have suggested alternative sites.

But Cllr Wheeler said: "There is a particular minority who are totally against it but the old days and the old ways of what was known as the notorious north ward have gone. "The whole attitude of the people who live here has changed - the people want more and they have greater aspirations and expectations.

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"I am extremely annoyed that there are still people who think in the old way. If we get this facility it will address the biggest single issue which is complaints against anti-social behaviour."

More than £800,000 is set to be pumped into the playground as part of a £2.5 million scheme to improve play areas across the county.

But Alan Lay of Beatrice Road said: "We do not want a playground for children situated in the middle of an area for the elderly and retired. Beatrice and Beechwood Roads are composed of bungalows for the retired. These two roads will become the main access route to this proposed area."

Tanya Edgell of Fenland Links said it was important as many residents as possible attend the next consultation meeting on December 15 at the Oasis Centre.

She said: "We haven't just decided on this site. There has been consultation and we are looking for full community involvement in this.

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