Hitchin’ a Slide – Play area confusion causes concern for residents

PUBLISHED: 03:00 09 January 2020

Oughton resident Jacqueline McDonald with the former slide. Picture: Jacqueline McDonald

Oughton resident Jacqueline McDonald with the former slide. Picture: Jacqueline McDonald


Residents have reacted with confusion and disgust after a slide was removed from a Hitchin play area without warning yesterday.

Many of the Oughton community were shocked to see the slide being removed from the park in John Barker Place during the school run yesterday morning.

One Oughton resident, Liz Whitelock, was disappointed to see the slide removed.

She said: "The slide being dismantled from the park is disgusting.

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"If it was removed for safety reasons, why out of common decency, was a notice not put up? As usual, the public do not count.

"No one on Westmill is against the redevelopment, but please all we ask is for the residents' views to be taken into account."

READ MORE: Proposed redevelopment of Hitchin's Westmill boosted by £20 million investment

This incident is the latest in the long-running saga between Westmill residents and the housing assocation Settle - which is leading regeneration efforts in the area.

A spokesperson from Settle said: "The safety of residents and those using the play area is our priority. A routine inspection identified that the slide was unsafe for use and we removed this as quickly as possible.

"We have submitted planning applications to provide a new play area on the edge of Swinburne playing fields. The current play area remains open and equipment will continue to be inspected daily."

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