Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Draining a park, BMX , mountain trails and skate-boarding

Ward committee last night approved the spending of some £20,000 to drain the playing field at Turnberry Park.

This is an exciting project which should lead to the creation of new football pitches and even organised teams for several thousand homes that adjoin this small park.

The park is tucked away alongside the M6 on the Booths Farm estate. Although it has a large flat area which has been used for sports in the summer, for much of the year this area is water-logged. Water flows down from the Great Barr hills and tries to drain away into the culvert that runs alongside the M6.

The money, allocated by the ward councillors from community chest, will pay for professional drainage. The Trehurst community centre can provide a base for organised football teams.

Over the last couple of months we have been running surveys round this neighbourhood and others affected by proposed developments. Support for this project has been overwhelming, approaching 100 per cent.

The committee also had an update about another exciting project - the creation of a new BMX track in Perry Barr Park.

Perry Barr has already been selected as the British entry to host the World BMX Championships in 2012 - just a few months before the Olympics in London. As it is close to the Olympics, Britain is very hopeful we will be successful.

 The new track will replace the old one, which sits just underneath the M6.
Alongside this project, we have been working with Oscott ward councillors to site a skate-board park by the BMX track. Again we have been asking local residents about this project - and responses have been 100 per cent positive.

The city's leisure department has further plans for the site. For by the BMX track is a wood. In fact until 15 years ago it was a tree nursery for the city but it was abandoned and became overgrown. It is now inaccessible.  It runs up to the banks of the motorway and the plans for the site now include creating tracks within these woods for mountain bikers.

All this will need to be linked to the wider park. The woods run up alongside the lake in the park and this will highlight the need to get the lake sorted out.

Karen Hamilton said: "This is all great news. These projects will help improve the environment of our area at the same time as providing activities for young people and children within Perry Barr."


Anonymous said...

"tracks within these woods for mountain bikers" - these might lead to disturbance to nesting birds, which would be illegal.

Jon said...

Good point. However a trail creates specific paths and deters people from rampaging through the woods in all directions.

We did ask the department about wildlife. They said because the wood is comparatively young their studies to date have not identified anything especially interesting. If you know anything different, I'd like to hear.

Anonymous said...

The law which prohibits the disturbance of nesting birds protects all of them, not just those deemed "especially interesting".

Anonymous said...

I am a keen bmx rider and I currently use the existing track underneath the M6, and I cannot stress enough how bad a condition it is in. Are there any indications as to when this new track will be built? Furthermore, will there be any worthwhile attempts to maintain the new track long term? Also, will there be any measures put in place to prevent youths smashing glass and such around the track?