New Bellshill play park under threat

Milnwood Play Park
Milnwood Play Park

AN online campaign has been started to save a Bellshill play park from closure just weeks after it was opened.

North Lanarkshire Council completed work on the £37,000 facility in Milnwood Park, commonly known as Sandy Park, around a month ago, but following complaints of anti-social behaviour are now consulting local residents about whether it should remain.

Local mother Kirsty Connell has launched a Facebook page and petition entitled as she believes it is an excellent addition to the area and younger children shouldn’t suffer due to pre-existing anti-social behaviour.

She said: “The play park was only built a few weeks ago and what a god send.

“My son is at this park from morning until night and I am regularly at the park with my six-year-old daughter. From what I have seen it has only been kids who have been enjoying themselves.

“There has been trouble in this park for years, even before the play area was built, and the police make daily and nightly appearances in the park.

“I can only assume the people who want this removed have nothing better to do than complain about kids, and more than likely do not have any of their own.”

Mossend and Holytown councillor Jimmy Coyle, who is also chairman of the Local Area Partnership, believes the council has handled this matter badly from the outset.

He said: “The council were right in that they didn’t have to consult with the public over creating the play park, but they really should have.

“Everyone wants play facilities for children, but no one wants one near them and as such there should have been dialogue before any work started to resolve some of these issues.

“Clearly this project was handled badly from the outset and hopefully lessons have been learned.”

The council said it was obliged to follow procedure after receiving the complaint.

Full story in July 28 edition of Bellshill Speaker.