Concerns over Hillsborough playpark

The play park in Hillsborough. US1539-564cd  Picture: Cliff Donaldson
The play park in Hillsborough. US1539-564cd Picture: Cliff Donaldson

Local MLA Brenda Hale hopes a meeting on Monday will resolve many issues that residents have over a play park in Hillsborough.

Planning permission was granted last year for apartments which will consist of two residential buildings, comprising of 10 apartments at land to the rear of Lisburn Street.

Residents who will meet at the Village Centre on Monday, are concerned part of the play park will be dug up when the apartments are being erected and they have grave concerns over access to a private gate which was installed a year ago.

One resident said, she had many worries.

“The people who will live in this development will be able to watch the children in the playpark,” she said.

“They will also have access to the park through a private gate when it is closed to the public, but will be opened to them.

“Anyone using the park, including parents and grandparents with their children will be filmed on CCTV cameras attached to the new buildings and that is against our human rights.

“I feel the health and safety of our children is paramount.”

Brenda Hale MLA said there are a lot of related issues that need to be sorted.

“As a local elected representative and resident of Hillsborough, I have been invited to attend a meeting next week to discuss local concerns over a number of issues, including the ‘accessing of services’ through Hillsborough play park,” she said.

“The Village Committee have agreed to meet the Council’s Director of Leisure Services in Hillsborough Village Centre next week, for discussions.

“A range of related issues of concern around the access of the play park and an adjoining new housing development are on the table for discussion and I hope that some common ground and a resolution to the issues can be found.”

When the development was passed in July 2014, the planning service received 42 letters of objection.

Councillor Alexander Redpath at that time said, “I am very concerned that the planning service passed this application despite dozens of objections.

“Hillsborough is an area of unique architectural importance and I believe these apartments are ill situated and completely out of character with the area.

“Applications like this are the reason why I welcome enhanced planning powers being transferred to Lisburn and Castlereagh Council.”