Concern over playpark progress

Concern has been expressed at the lack of progress on a new playpark for Castle Douglas.

The council allocated £125,000 to the scheme three years ago, with the town’s development forum tasked with finding a similar amount.

However, since then only £10,000 has been raised.

At a meeting of the council’s communities committee, Councillor Davie Stitt asked: “How long is this going to drag on for?

“I’d love to see the playpark at Carlingwark, I think it would be a great attraction, but this seems to be dragging its feet.”

He added that had it not been for local councillor, John Young, calling for a further round of public engagement and consultation at the June meeting of the committee, the figure raised would probably have been even less.

Mr Young told the meeting: “On a personal level I believe more progress has been made in the past three months than the past three years.”

Community assets manager Nicola Simpson said the development forum had secured £5,000 from the Winnifred Kennedy Trust and the group had raised £5,000. Results on funding applications for a further £34,000 were due shortly, while the Holywood Trust was set to provide £60,000 for a changing places toilet.

Committee chairman Andy Ferguson, said: “I think they deserve at least a wee bit of time now. It’ll be interesting when we get this full consultation document back and how they’re going to take things forward.

“We can look at this again in the new year. I think we just give them that wee bit of extra time to try to get it over the line themselves before we intervene.”

It had originally been intended for the inclusive playpark to be installed at Market Hill.

However, the latest round of consultation shows nearly half of those who took part favour a site near the caravan park in Lochside Park beside Carlingwark Loch. Ten per cent favour another site in the park, with the remaining 40 per cent still preferring Market Hill.

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