Slide frustration

CHILDREN awaiting the replacement of a popular slide removed following safety fears will have to wait until November - because of bureaucracy.

CHILDREN awaiting the replacement of a popular slide removed following safety fears will have to wait until November - because of 'bureaucracy.'

In March, the rusting 'Tractor' slide was removed from King George V playing field, following a district council safety inspection.

It was hoped the slide would be replaced by the summer so children could enjoy it during their school break.

The money to pay for the new slide, �5,000, was to have come from a pot of cash donated by developers to compensate for the impact of a development on residents..

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Nicholas Struthers-Frost of EDDC said: "...the use of section 106 money must happen with the local residents, the most likely course of action will be for EDDC to approach five companies."

A short list would then be drawn up and the designs could be voted on.

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Town councillor Richard Turner said: "...we are now into the summer when this equipment is in regular demand.

"I find it very difficult to understand how so much bureaucracy can be used to prevent such a fundamental piece of equipment to be replaced in time for young families to enjoy during the summer.

"I find it most concerning that nothing can be done to speed up this ridiculous situation. Surely, the enjoyment of the young is more important.

"I have been approached by several parents...the way comparatively small requirements by local communities are being handled, causes frustration to both the public and their local representatives."

A spokesman for EDDC said: "It is hoped that a replacement for the slide will be installed by November.

"The council has asked its contractors to come up with a number of ideas for replacement play equipment for the site."

She added that the contractors are visiting the playing field and will come back with suggested designs later this month.

The designs will go out to public consultation on August 29, when users of the play area will be asked what they would like.

"There may be one or more pieces of equipment. Once officers have the results of the consultation, it will be a maximum of four to six weeks before the new equipment is installed."

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