Clowes Park conversation feedback

Three drop-in conversations were held between September and November 2022.

The drop-ins gave park users and local residents the chance to say what they wanted from the park, discover how to get involved in the park and meet their local councillors and the council’s neighbourhood, parks, health improvement and youth services officers. Salford Community and Voluntary Services and Life for a Life Memorial Forests were also there to assist. 

If you have not been able to attend any of these occasions, please be assured that the door will be kept open and new ways found to hear your voice. We hope you will join the conversation as we progress.

What you told us was important

The table below gives the number of people who mentioned the suggestions and issues listed but here is a summary.

Meeting people

In giving their reasons for visiting the park, 30% of you included ‘to meet friends’ or ‘to care for others’. You told us about the positive social interaction that takes place in the park and how this could be encouraged and made easier. You suggested that more and better seating, provision of some shelter and toilets and an outlet for refreshments would encourage people to come to the park and to extend their stay.

Relaxation

Many of you valued the park as a place for peaceful relaxation, a refuge from the city. You appreciate the simple walk around the lake taking in the varied scenery of trees, lake, and lawns. 

Better maintenance

However, the water quality and littering of the lake is the most common issue for the park that came out of the conversation.  There are elements in the park’s maintenance that you would like to see improved, for example, maintenance of overgrowth, removal of litter and offensive graffiti. The addition of new flower beds to enhance the park.

Improved play facilities

Many of you come to the park to use or supervise children at the play areas. These are very well used at certain times of the day and week. You recognised that the play areas are dated and limited in their play value. They need modernising for all ages and capabilities, with stimulating new equipment and more seating provided within the play zones and elsewhere in the park.

Recreation

Some of you wanted to see more provision for recreation and exercise in the park: examples are given in the table below. In places, the pathways are seen as being too narrow to accommodate the number of visitors and the different uses at busy times.

Personal safety and anti-social behaviour

Against this positive experience of the park and your suggestions for improvement in the future, one third of you expressed concerns for your personal safety at times in the park and about regular anti-social behaviour taking place, particularly during evenings and after dark, sometimes after midnight. The noise, fire making and intimidation that can result is disturbing to residents nearby and threatening to park users visiting the park for legitimate reasons. Park features such as the boat house and the Life for a Life Memorial Forest are being damaged by this activity.

Amongst the suggestions to counter this anti-social behaviour were to install CCTV cameras, provide lighting in the park and to lock the perimeter gates at night. In addition, there were calls for more youth outreach work and for a purpose-designed youth zone.

Regular communication

To help maintain regular and consistent communication between park users, near-neighbours and the local authority, a regular bulletin was recommended, posted on site, and distributed in other ways to the neighbourhood. This should include an email point of contact. Improved signage at the park was also put forward to assist in both this and to better control dogs in the park.

Getting involved

Ten offers to volunteer for the benefit of the park in various ways came forward. These might be led and supported sessions, for example to help clear rubbish from the lake or learn about gardening and assisting with park enhancements. Park users offered to help advise on the accessibility of the park. Volunteers might form a group that enables community activities on the park, including a possible community café.

There were entrepreneurial suggestions coming forward too, for example to assess boating on the lake.

You can contact us at EastSalford.NMT@salford.gov.uk

Table of numbers

Suggestions and issues

Percentage of people quoting (%)

Clean the lake

70

Improve the play area

51

Improve / increase seating

44

Provide more litter bins / littering problem

36

Concerns about personal safety and anti-social behaviour

33

Maintain the trees and shrubs

31

Provide for recreation and exercise, eg football, tennis, basketball, bikes, outdoor gym, running, fitness and walking

25

Provide shelter

22

Improve the pathways

19

Provide lighting

18

Provide toilets

17

Set up a café or mobile coffee

15

Improve the railings and gates

14

Lock the park gates overnight

14

Encourage nature and wildlife

14

Introduce flower beds

14

Remove graffiti

12

Offer to volunteer

10

Install CCTV cameras

10

More youth work / create youth zone

10

Re-build boat house

9

Signage and action on control of dogs

9

Boating on the lake

8

Improve maintenance of the park in general

8

Footnotes

  • Feedback based on 100 conversations held on Wednesday 21 September and Sunday 23 October at Clowes Park and Sunday 13 November 2022 at the session for young people at Fulda’s Hotel.
  • In the table are the numbers/percentage of those who spoke to us who mentioned the suggestions and issues, as recorded on their returns and ranked by percentage.
  • Of those who spoke to us, 69% were estimated to be adults (aged 21 and over), 31% were young people (aged under 21). Where stated, 17 lived as near neighbours of the park, 31 lived within 1.2km and four lived further away.

Partners who hosted the Clowes Park conversation and prepared feedback:

This page was last updated on 11 January 2023

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