Adventure playground

Play facilities in Central Park took a major step forward in 2003 when the Seven Continents adventure playground opened on a new site, south west of the clock tower.  Before then there was a small traditional playground on the south side of Britannia Way between the swimming pool and the clock tower, which had been built in 1986 to replace the original Milehouse playground. 

The new adventure playground featured a range of dry and wet-play activities for children of all ages.  The Europe zone included representations of local Plymouth landmarks, whilst the Antarctica zone had a range of interactive wet-play features such as a water ring that formed a cage of vertical stream jets, water walls and a high spray arch. Climbing equipment with a space-age theme could be found in the North American zone.

The play equipment was designed and installed by the international firm, Kompan, which made the following statement at the time: “This is a very bold and innovative scheme by Plymouth City Council. They have created one of the biggest and best free-to-use adventure playgrounds in the country.”

In 2017, the programme of park improvements included a new layout for the play area and new equipment on a theme of “birds, bees and butterflies.”  Two areas were fenced for toddlers and young children and their features included multi-person swings, a tree house, a roundabout, water pumps and trays, and a large sandpit surrounded by decking.  In the larger, open area for older children, there were trampolines, hammocks, low ropes, a double zip wire and a huge climbing and sliding structure.  The suppliers, Russell Play, designed the equipment to be robust, in context with the wider park and having minimum impact on natural resources.

The hot dry summer of 2018 meant that the new grass took longer to establish than planned and the play area finally opened with a party on 20th October 2018.