Seldown Park, a new urban park for Poole, is officially opened by The Mayor of Poole, Cllr Graham Wilson, on Thursday 26 April 2012.
Named in recognition of Seldown House which once stood on the site, Seldown Park transforms a once forgotten and poorly-used area into a welcoming, contemporary greenspace in the centre of Poole.
Drab walls, raised beds and tall planters have been replaced with wide terraced banks, hardwood benches, granite paving and new lighting. Pathways have been repositioned, turf laid, 29 mature trees planted and a central art feature installed. The exterior of the Everyone Active: Poole Leisure Centre has also been cleaned and the small staff car park has been resurfaced, helping to further improve the look of the park. In addition, a new road layout next to Seldown Park has been created including a pedestrian ramp across Kingland Road which will link the town centre with neighbouring Poole Park.
The central art feature uses a design by local artist Rachel Huggett that includes three ‘ribbons’ of recycled glass and is inspired by the area’s previous uses as a rope works and the movement of water in the nearby swimming pool and Poole Bay. The design was influenced by workshops in the Dolphin Centre and schools where residents of all ages were asked for their impressions and memories of this particular area of Poole.
Contractors, the Landscape Group, have submitted the project for a national award from the British Association of Landscape Industries (BALI).
The much-loved mulberry tree has had special attention since high winds in January caused it to fall over. The tree has been propped up and formative pruning has taken place which, along with heavy mulching and close monitoring of its health, will help to ensure this historic tree has the best chance of survival for the future.
Cllr Graham Wilson, Mayor of Poole who will officially open Seldown Park on Thursday 26th April at 2.30pm said: "This is a fantastic example of how good design and landscaping, as a result of public consultation, can breathe new life into an important area of the town."
Cllr Judy Butt, Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Public Engagement and Participation, Borough of Poole said: "We are committed to improving Poole's public spaces and we are delighted with the results at Seldown Park. It is vitally important for all local residents to have access to good quality and safe public spaces."
Further information about this project can be found at www.leisureprojects.net.