THE Whitehill and Bordon Regeneration Company will host the official public opening of a new natural play area at the Hogmoor Inclosure on Monday.
The natural play area will be opened between 1.30pm and 2.30pm by Robert Smith, from the Defence Infrastructure Organisation, at a ribbon-cutting ceremony attended by members of the public and dignitaries.
The natural play area has been, according to the regeneration company, “thoughtfully designed” and “carefully and sensitively integrated” into an existing clearing in the Hogmoor woodland, which is located within easy reach of Hogmoor Road.
Five character areas have been defined which are influenced by the setting: woodland play, informal play, sensory play, passive play and active play.
The modern features and equipment include a maze, a wooden play area, a sandpit, a zip wire, an artificial pond and a rope bridge. There are also new plants, street furniture and seating.
“The design of the natural play area accounts for the character of the Hogmoor Inclosure and the extraordinary setting it provides children and families to explore the natural world on their doorstep,” said James Child, project lead at the Whitehill and Bordon Regeneration Company. “We want it to become a core part of people’s enjoyment of the great outdoors and we look forward to seeing people at the opening ceremony.”
The project has taken almost four months to complete and was managed by Avon Construction, based in Ringwood, which has also overseen the construction of a new bat bunker, a bird hide and footpaths in the Hogmoor Inclosure.
Approximately 800 tons of topsoil has been imported along with sea-dredge shingle to create a beach effect around a new artificial pond, and large glacial boulders have come from Scotland for the landscaping.
New paths link the play area to the existing footpath network and to proposed development areas at Prince Philip Barracks, so visitors can enjoy three walking routes through the trees with small play items and seating along the way. The routes are 1.2km, 2.1km and 2.9km long (between about half and two miles long).
Those wishing to drive to the opening event can park their vehicles in the new car park in Hogmoor Road.