Grandmother’s concern over safety of children’s play area in Letchworth GC

A GRANDMOTHER has voiced her concern around the security of a children’s play area after her grandson was hospitalised after he became impaled on a metal fence pole on Saturday.

Dayley Moore, nine, from Letchworth GC, had been playing with friends on a climbing frame on Hillbrow recreation ground in Letchworth GC when his foot slipped and he became impaled on a metal spike.

The play area had been out of bounds and cordoned off following a fire which happened two weeks ago.

Notices were displayed on the climbing frame to warn users of the damage that had been caused by the fire, however the signs had become illegible in the rain.

Grandmother of Dayley, Tracey Moore, also from Letchworth GC, said: “It is a disgrace as to the way this children’s area had been secured. Dayley managed to get onto the climbing frame because there was only half of the secure orange netting covering the play area. Dayley didn’t see the hook and slipped onto it. There was a notice on the play area, but it had been watered down by the rain and couldn’t be read.”

Mrs Moore said that, after the incident, police officers had advised North Herts District Council workers not to put the metal fence poles, securing the orange netting, up again.

However, when Mrs Moore went back to the area she found they had been put back up, but had been moved further down the play area.

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A spokesman for the fire service said: “Ironically, the metal spike was part of a barrier to stop children going onto the climbing frame as it had been damaged in a fire the Hitchin crew had attended two weeks prior.”

The metal spike was impaled about 25mm into Dayley’s abdomen.

Blocks were placed under his feet to prevent him falling further down onto the spike.

Firefighters cut the pole and the boy was taken to Lister Hospital in Stevenage to have the remaining part of the spike surgically removed.

A council spokesman said: “We recently fenced off damaged equipment at Hillbrow play area following an arson attack, while the undamaged parts of the play area were kept open.

“An incident occurred in the fenced off area on Saturday which has been referred to the Health and Safety Executive, who we will liaise with to clarify the full details. Once that is done, we will be able to comment further.”