About a 10 years back someone instructed me about a playground in the far north of Lewis. The particular person was puzzled that a playground really should be made where the machair meets the sand dunes. Just after all, the beach is the fantastic playground.
I thoroughly comprehend the sentiment. The elements of sand, sea, extensive grass and wildflowers present a higher affordance normal playscape, that is, one particular that gives inspiration and options in the eyes of those who care to believe this way.
Still, as a child I loved and craved “proper” engage in grounds with swings, slides, climbing frames and so on. I consider I perceived these as spots the place I was permitted to play and do primarily what I wished to do. I also liked the sensations of swinging, sliding, spinning, rocking and other kinds of motion that I skilled a lot less satisfactorily in other parts of my life.
The previous time I frequented Lewis, I made a point of seeking out this playground. It turns out the Eoropie Dunes Park has its very own website! That quickly tells you that this perform space is valued. It is obvious from the site that this is a a great deal-beloved community asset. It relies on volunteers to fund increase, use for grants and to assist with the ongoing routine maintenance. I’ve no thought who created all the cartoon advisory posters, but they had been humorous and enjoyable.
Young children are actively included in the committee and establishing and seeking following the park. You can see this when you go to from the posters and over-all truly feel of the internet site. It is very distinctive and like no other playground. For instance, here’s a person of the wheelie litter bins…
What struck me much too was the sheer sum of space – it’s a 4 acre internet site! . Thus the terrain itself since as vital as the perform features in just the area. There’s also a range of natural habitats which include boggy spots and wee streams.
You can also see that there is no need to have for a formal sandpit. The fundamental sand surfaces all in excess of the spot. Although the goalie could have a soft landing surface area, I believe a sport of football could at times confirm challenging…
The sand also furnished a clue for the presence of a regular engage in attribute and I feel, provided the great high quality of the sand, that it’s been suited as a basic safety floor exactly where needed for some of the engage in options – other individuals even now have rubber matting if essential.
Some of the perform characteristics direct you to explore the park. The classic balancing assault system went round and involving many dunes and there were all sorts of invitations to go and take a look at other spots. It did not have the honeypot feel of some enjoy parks exactly where there is a central focus or hub and then the peripherary is significantly less enjoyable or there is a boundary fence.
Because of the undulating terrain, there was plenty of spots to encounter top and attain a sense of viewpoint and this also allows you see what is on supply.
The tunnels above and down below also connected enjoy locations. The 1 beneath is a skatepark and you can see a hoop – suggesting the area is catering for all ages.
The park also has been designed about numerous several years – given that the late Nineties. You can see this in the structures that or a variety of ages and clearly show some of the “fashions” of the time when they were acquired.
I notably cherished this huge yellow boat and slide. It was like almost nothing else I’ve noticed.
The same with the wood maze under which absolutely has a “Wild West” fort feel to it.
Also tucked away was a duplicate pre-historic chamber… now which is a different kind of den or hidey framework.
From a distance, it just seems like a pile of rocks.
Shelter from the wind is an ongoing problem in any element of the Outer Hebrides. The wooden cross composition under along with seating in just about every component suggests there’s generally somewhere a bit much more sheltered, regardless of the wind way.
These pics only show a fraction of the park. If you a viewing Lewis, this park is nicely worth a check out. Examine out the web-site and make a donation as the ongoing managing charges are always going to be there. But most importantly, have fun and get pleasure from all the park has to provide. Even though it is free of charge to go to and open all year round, it is closed on Sundays.