The Pirate Park site is steeped in local history, with its origins as a lido. Carrington Lido opened on the 29th July 1937 and closed in 1988. Before that, The Great Central Railway passed through the area stopping at Carrington Station between 1899 and 1929. The station was based where the Open University Clarendon Buildings are now, just next to the roundabouts where Mansfield Road meets Gregory Boulevard. For more history, this article is an interesting read and tells you more about the history of Sherwood too.
Over recent years, the Pirate Park in Carrington has taken a bit of a beating in regard to it’s favour with local children and families. After the fabulous renovation a fair few years back, when the park was truly themed as the Pirate Park with the addition of wooden ships and blue bark to boot, it has slowly found itself in steady decline. With damage to the wooden structures, missing parts, litter and even drug paraphernalia being found in the children’s sandpit.
Throughout this, it is still a widely used park by a variety of age groups, from younger children to young adults. The two newest additions to the park (the bird nest swing and the giant orange see-saw) are great for older children too, but as they are the most exciting items there, this tends to mean that there just isn’t enough to go around, which can leave people feeling resentful of the bigger kids that tend to hang around whilst their toddlers get bored waiting for a go. We believe that by adding/maintaining some other play structures for younger children, and incorporating wider play options into the space, we can once again restore this valuable open space to it’s former glory, ensuring that there is something available for everyone, so that every child, of any age, feels welcome to play and explore.
There has been a lot of community input in years gone by, when a group set up by the local community, called ‘The Friends of Pirate Park’ worked together to generate funding and incorporate local children’s artwork into the decorations on the park. There is also a local Carrington Residents and Tenants Association, who work tirelessly to manage any problems in regard to the local area and improve community cohesion.
Friends of Pirate Park are now back, and are looking for people to get involved. Help us to restore an under-loved and unmaintained space with plenty of potential back into it’s pride of place within the community. Being involved can be anything from letting us know what you think about the park via our facebook group, coming to meetings and being a part of the action group or just visiting the park and making use of the space!
Another way you could help is by coming to this community event; a chance to meet your neighbours, play and even get stuck into a park clean up (if you fancy it). If you are a keen gardener, bring your gloves, if you have a penchant for litter-picking, bring a bin bag or if you just want to sit in the sunshine and enjoy a picnic with your family, we would love to see you. There will be face painting, story telling, nature activities, games and more.
If you want to be involved with FOPP, please do get in touch. We are currently operating through facebook at the moment but we will soon have an email that you can use to contact the group. Thank you for reading, and we look forward to seeing you at PP soon.