fears halt £120,000 plans for new sports facilities at Apex
to build a new £120,000 outdoor sports area in Highbridge's
Apex Park have been dealt a setback this week after the district
council said the proposals could harm the park's green environmental
first reported here in May
that Burnham and Highbridge Town Council is applying for £100,000
of funding to build a new MUGA (Multi Use Games Area) in Apex
Park that would be used for football, netball, basketball and
at a Town Council meeting last night (Wednesday, June 20th) the
plans were thrown into doubt following objections from Apex Park
Improvements Group and Sedgemoor District Council.
an open letter to the Town Council which was discussed at the
meeting, Sedgemoor's Parks and Open Spaces Officer, Harley Cook,
said: "Apex Park is recognised as a leisure and wildlife
park with County Wildlife status. The provision of a hard surface
MUGA could be seen as detrimental to this status."
only suitable location for a MUGA would be on the land occupied
as a grass football pitch adjacent to the play area and skate
park. This grass surface facility is in keeping with the environment
at the park, appreciated by the public and well used."
district council is planning a new 'outdoor gym' at the park,
but Mr Cook added: "Are we in danger of providing too many
facilities at the park and destroying the green space character
which is well loved by those who visit?"
Park Improvements Group has also objected to the proposals, stating
that the area has recently been expanded with a new play park
as well as being actively used by children playing football.
Neville Jones, who put forward the proposals, told Burnham-On-Sea.com
after Wednesday's meeting: "I am disappointed that Apex Park
is not seen as the right location but hope that we can find an
alternative. A MUGA would provide superb sports facilities for
young people in Burnham and Highbridge. It would be a similar
games area to the one already in place next to Berrow Village
Hall that is well used."
Allan Miller added: "I am disappointed there is no room at
Apex for these facilities. We should investigate other areas nearby,
including land besides the BMX Park and the BAY Centre."
Kate Lawson added: "The proposed facilities would ideally
be located at Apex, but I think Southwell Gardens could be another
location if the land owners were in agreement. It would be nearer
some of the new housing developments."
councillors are to hold a site visit to consider alternative locations
for the facilities.
this year, the Town Council set aside £20,000 from its general
reserves for the project and it is also bidding for £100,000
from Sedgemoor District Council of so-called 'RLT3 funding', which
comes from housing developers' contributions towards the provision
of community leisure facilities.