Belfast Telegraph

McCausland opens Ballysillan Play Park and Multi-Games Area

Stormont Executive press release - Department for Social Development

Social Development Minister Nelson McCausland has opened the £236,000 Ballysillan Play Park and Multi-Games Area.

The Department has been implementing a number of public realm improvement schemes within the Ballysillan neighbourhood including new be-spoke style railings to the front of Ballysillan Leisure Centre and Ardoyne Road.

Following this it was decided that the Ballysillan play park should be replaced and a new multi-games area provided to regenerate adjacent vacant land.

Opening the new facilities at Ballysillan, the Minister said: “Play for children and young people helps them to blossom and flourish and is essential for their healthy development and well being. I know that these new facilities, together with the recently completed public realm schemes, have helped to create a more attractive environment for local communities and businesses in the Ballysillan area.

“By funding environmental improvement schemes, the Northern Ireland Executive, through my department’s Neighbourhood Renewal Strategy, continue to invest in the improvement of the environment and image of disadvantaged neighbourhoods. I am determined these areas will become more attractive places in which to live, work and invest. Of course, schemes like this do not happen on their own and this project is an excellent example of the public sectors coming together to deliver benefits for this local community, in this case between my Department and Belfast City Council.”

Councillor Gareth McKee, Chair of Belfast City Council Parks and Leisure Committee said: “I would like to congratulate those involved in this environmental improvement scheme that involved new be-spoke railings, a refurbished play park and new multi-games area. The Belfast Regeneration Office, in partnership with Belfast City Council has delivered significant physical renewal and environmental improvements to this area. Environmental Improvement Schemes bring physical renewal along with the possibility of attracting new investment and make neighbourhoods such as Ballysillan more attractive places to visit, shop, work, live and play.”

Notes to editors:

1. Ballysillan Play Park commands a high profile location at Ballysillan Road in North Belfast.

2. The project is located within the Upper Ardoyne Neighbourhood Renewal Area which is one of the top 10% most deprived areas in Northern Ireland.

3. Ballysillan Play Park is a well used community facility that has prominent frontage location at Ballysillan Road. The play park was in need of refurbishment and detracted from the overall visual appearance of the new be-spoke railings at Ballysillan Road.

4. The project is being funded by the Department for Social Development through its Belfast Regeneration Office’s Neighbourhood Renewal Programme.

5. The Neighbourhood Renewal Strategy 'People and Place' which was published in June 2003, sets out government’s proposals for closing the gap between the quality of life for people in the most deprived neighbourhoods and the rest of society.

The Neighbourhood Renewal Strategy has four interlinking strategic objectives:

· The Neighbourhood Renewal Strategy ‘People and Place’ was published in June 2003 to close the gap between the quality of life for people in the most deprived neighbourhoods and the rest of society.

· Community Renewal – to develop confident communities that are able and committed to improving the quality of life in their areas.

· Economic Renewal – to develop economic activity in the most deprived neighbourhoods and connect them to the wider urban economy.

· Social Renewal – to improve social conditions for the people who live in the most deprived neighbourhoods through better co-ordinated public services and the creation of safer environments.

· Physical Renewal – to help create attractive, safe and sustainable environments in the most deprived neighbourhoods

6. See photos from the Department for Social Development in our collection at

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