Parents start campaign to save popular Washington play park

Residents who want to keep Pastures Park, in Fatfield, in use.
Residents who want to keep Pastures Park, in Fatfield, in use.
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Residents are calling on council chiefs to keep a popular play park open for their children after bosses admitted options for sites on Wearside are set to be reviewed.

Mums and dads from Washington have started a petition to keep the Pastures play park in Fatfield open.

Residents who want to keep Pastures Park, in Fatfield, in use.

Residents who want to keep Pastures Park, in Fatfield, in use.

It comes as it was revealed by Sunderland City Council that officers are set to begin discussions on “various options” for play sites across the city next month.

They have stressed that no decisions have yet been made in regards to any possible closures.

Dad-of-two Keith Tilmouth has set up the petition, entitled Save The Pastures Fatfield Play Park, which now has more than 1,160 signatures.

“The park’s been there for the best part of 14 years now and it’s really well used by toddlers to older kids, who often treat it as a meeting place,” said Mr Tilmouth.

“It will be extremely disappointing if it closes.

“You get people from now just around the estate where I live but people from other estates bring their kids to it.

“Whilst I understand we live in times of austerity and difficult choices must be made I really believe this is a simple choice to keep and maintain an area that provides so many children an area of safe haven to play, express themselves, learn and have so much fun.”

Commercial manager Mr Tilmouth, 44, added that if the park were to be closed it would inconvenience a lot of families.

“I can only speak for what I see and literally every day when I come home from work someone is using the park whether it’s a grandparent with young children or older kids meeting there,” said Mr Tilmouth, married to Lisa, 44, and dad to Liam, 15, and Emily, 11.

“A lot of young families use this park and there aren’t really any others within walking distance.”

Councillor Michael Mordey, portfolio holder for city services at Sunderland City Council, said in response to the petition: “No decisions have been made about the closure of any play parks and anyone suggesting that is completely wrong and misleading people.

“Elected members and officers will begin discussions on various options for fixed play sites across the city at the Area Committee Place Boards in September.”