Concerned parents rally for shade at Gladstone playground
AS SPRING warms up so does the region’s play equipment and the lack of shade at playgrounds in Tannum Sands has the community frustrated.
Mother of two Michelle Sargaison said all she could do was ask for a shade sail to be erected and hope the council listened.
“I have young children so I guess it came to my attention as the weather has gotten hotter, even the sand is hot as well,” Ms Sargaison said.
“There is two different areas which are burning hot, literally you couldn’t walk on the sand.”
Ms Sargaison said as one of several mothers with young children who frequented the playground area, she was not the only one advocating for shade.
“That is why I posted to social media and Kahn Goodluck has been absolutely fantastic in listening to my concerns and letting me include his email on the post,” she said.
Ms Sargaison said her message to Gladstone Regional Council was it was very important for young children and young families that the shade sail was built.
“I also know it has been an ongoing problem for almost 20 years,” she said.
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Cr Goodluck said the issue first came to his attention after a fig tree, which used to provide “a fair bit of shade to that particular park” was cut down after a storm.
“We had to remove the tree and obviously after that there was a lot less shade cover over that park, I think that was in the last six months or so,” Cr Goodluck said.
Since the tree’s removal Cr Goodluck said he’d had a number of people raise the issue with him due to the sun’s exposure on the equipment and sand.
“I have raised the issue with council and our operations team and we are going to try and look at getting a solution in place as soon as we can,” he said.
Cr Goodluck said the issue was close to home for him after his own children complained of having their feet burnt at the Millennium Esplanade site.
“My wife has raised the exact same issue with me so I am very aware it is hot on young feet and hands,” he said.
“That is not ideal as we want kids to enjoy the play equipment all year round.”
Cr Goodluck said GRC had introduced a rate freeze in the wake of COVID-19 off the back of a $4m deficit, so there was budgetary issues they had to work through.
“Ultimately we would love to see shade structures covering playgrounds right across our regions, but sometimes these shades structures can be quite costly,” he said.