Purley park receives a facelift

Neil Fortes from the Parks and Recreation Department with ward councillor Sharon Cottle, unveiling the new play equipment at the park

Playtime at Harfield Village’s Purley park is now a whole lot more fun after it got a facelift and some new play equipment.

The Friends of Harfield Parks (FOHP) appealed to ward councillor Sharon Cottle, to rejuvenate the park, which is one of four they oversee.

Chairwoman Caroline Konstant said Purley park had been long overdue for a facelift. The other three parks had already had revamps in the past five years.

The councillor gave the go-ahead for a giant wooden jungle gym to be installed – paid for from the ward budget. Other improvements include a new picnic table and wooden fencing.

“The new fencing is in line with the FOHP long term plan to create a more natural look in the parks, to offset the increasing hard surfaces and densification that is taking place in and around the village,” Ms Konstant said.

Resident Reed Harris welcomed the improvements.

“It’s such a beautiful space and the kids simply love it. The setting and everything in the park is great and is certainly a space for your whole family to enjoy,” he said.

He believes the FOHP and City should hire a permanent security officer to prevent vandalism.

“It’s unfortunate that if new items are in the park, it will stand out and attract these vandals who will either deface the equipment or remove them to sell them off.”

Anthea du Preez, watched her four-year-old daughter testing the new play equipment.

“I think it’s fantastic to see this place receiving some attention. It’s important that our kids are able to come out of their homes and into safer environments in order to play.

“With the upgrades, I think we will have to be coming a lot more to the park from now onwards.”

Following organic permaculture principles, the FOHP is creating green islands where residents can relax.

“Wonderful indigenous planting beds have been created and already the increase in birds and small wildlife like lizards and chameleons can be observed,” Ms Konstant said.

The FOHP relies on donations to employ a weekly gardener who weeds, collects litter, sweeps pathways and carries out general maintenance. It also has monthly work parties for residents who join together for a few hours to create new beds, trim bushes, paint walls and meet the neighbours.

Email harfield.parks@gmail.com for more information.