This week, Reading Borough Council (RBC) will discuss spending £786,700 over the next two years on improving recreation areas across the town, including Cintra Park, Longbarn Recreation Area and Rabson’s Rec in south Reading.

The council will discuss enhancements to parks and recreation areas at the housing, neighbourhoods and leisure committee on 14 March, which is expected to be webcast.

Some of the money will come from ‘section 106’ payments that property developers give to the council as part of planning applications.

South Reading parks and recreation grounds will benefit from £109,200 of investment which represents 14% of the total. The largest single amount of £294,100 (37%) will be spent on ongoing improvements to parks along the Thames.

Cintra Park

The council proposes investing £70,000 (9% of the total) in the playground and sports area at Cintra Park, starting in summer 2018.

The park has undergone a number of improvements over the last five years including landscaping, completion of a perimeter path and new outdoor fitness stations.

[Ref: link 3].

Longbarn Lane Recreation Ground

New outdoor furniture costing £4,900 (less than 1% of the total) is planned for the Longbarn Lane recreation ground, starting autumn 2019.

The surrounding area consists of high density housing and higher than average levels of anti-social behaviour amongst young people. The site has a history of abuse and any new infrastructure needs to be particularly robust.

[Ref: link 3].

Rabson’s Rec

RBC proposes £14,800 (2% of the total) of improvements to the log feature at Rabson’s Recreation Ground, starting in summer 2018.

In 2010 the playground underwent a complete refurbishment and extension. It is now the largest and most well used in the south Reading area.

[Ref: link 3].

Other recreation areas in south Reading

A new safety surface for Katesgrove Primary School’s play area has already been installed, at a cost of £19,500 (2% of the total).

This popular dual use facility is particularly heavily used. Throughout the term time, the school has exclusive use of the play area. During the evenings, weekends and holiday periods, the play area and adjacent hard court area is available for public use.

[Ref: link 3].

No money has been set aside in this programme for Waterloo Meadows, where the BMX track was renovated last summer.

The council may also discuss future schemes, which are dependent on funding. One of these includes £132,000 of new outdoor sports facilities for Whitley Wood Recreation Ground.

  1. £786k to be invested in Reading Parks
  2. Housing, Neighbourhoods and Leisure Committee, 14 March 2018
  3. Capital improvements programme for leisure, parks and open spaces 2018-2010 [PDF download]
  4. Cintra Park benefits from developer contributions
  5. Cintra Park
  6. The jubilee cedar tree in Cintra Park
  7. Waterloo Meadows BMX track renovated ready for summer holidays
  8. Are Reading’s Parks under threat because of budget cuts?