Residents upset at unannounced parks work in Beeston

Major work is under way on the Garnets pocket park in Beeston, and the next door Tunstall Road playground has been removed (to become relocated onto the Garnets space) – but residents have expressed anger that the work has been conducted with little or no warning or consultation.

Tunstall Road Playground 2018

The playground – just behind the Vale Circles Centre on Tunstall Road – was removed out of the blue in mid February. Locals then found the Garnet pocket park – opposite the new housing development – fenced off and dug up the following week (Wednesday 21 February), and several of the trees there were cut down.

Online and off, residents have expressed frustration and disbelief that these works happened with little or no warning. There was a consultation event back in the autumn, but many locals insist they never got any invitation to it – and attendees report that information at it was very sketchy, and that for instance the removal of the playground wasn’t even mentioned.

Plan for the Garnets Pocket Park. Click to enlarge

Council officers have now confirmed the plans: the playground is due to be re-installed on part of the refurbished Garnet green space, whilst the former site of the playground is set to become an edible garden run by Vale Circles and other local partners and residents. It seems that local frustration is reducing as information gets out, but many residents are nonetheless calling for different processes in future.

Michelle, a local resident, spoke for many when she told us:

“It’s great news that the green patch is set to be improved, but it’s such a shame no-one thought to tell local residents.

“People were really taken aback and upset – especially those who regularly used these areas. Local people have plenty of ideas for the scheme – like more benching, and fitness units – but the Council didn’t do enough to reach out and involve us.

“I look forward to seeing the end result, but it would have been so much better if the community could have helped develop it. Can we do things differently in future?”

 

 

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Posted in: Beeston

About the Author:

Ed's originally from Sheffield, had the misfortune to grow up down south, but has lived in Leeds since the 90s and Beeston since 2002. He’s involved in various local projects, including: Beeston Festival, the Holbeck viaduct scheme, Park Run, some youth work, Park View Primary (he's chair of governors), some local green/growing projects, and South Leeds Life. He co-runs the Leeds-wide charity Together for Peace, and is married to Tania.

3 Comments on "Residents upset at unannounced parks work in Beeston"

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  1. Simon says:

    Isn`t it Hunslet and Riverside or something now not Beeston?
    An edible garden next to all the traffic fumes?
    The “new” pocket park NEEDS CCTV and enforcement to stop dog owners not picking up after their pets and stop persistent alcohol users and drug sellers in this area please.

    • Ed Carlisle says:

      Hi Simon.
      The Council ward previously known as ‘City and Hunslet’ (which included the Garnets and all of Beeston Hill) has been renamed ‘Hunslet and Riverside’. No big change, at least not in this neck of the woods.
      Regarding the edible garden, it will in its defence be surrounded on all sides by fencing etc – not ideal, but not bad.
      And yes to CCTV / enforcement / anything that can keep the refurbished park clean and nice. I guess the hope is that the new houses will make it a lot more visible, so less attractive to ne’er-do-wells, but it’s also about trying to support the local residents to love it, use it, care for it, etc.
      I couldn’t agree with you more about the Council’s lack of info and consultation up to this point, but I guess it’s about going forward positively, and trying to make it good.
      Catch up soon, and chat more then. Cheers fella.

  2. sf says:

    How about a temporary bin for beer cans and dog waste whilst these works are on going please,the area is now covered in dog waste and empty cans from people who have nowhere to throw waste.
    I am sick of the dog waste being spread on the path directly outside my house.
    :O(

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