November 29, 2022
Coombe Abbey, Warwickshire
Coombe Abbey, in Binley, Warwickshire is a 500 acre Capability Brown designed park, with landscaped gardens, woodland and lakeside walks. The Abbey itself, which sits within the grounds, is a beautiful hotel in a stunning location that dates back to the 12th century.
We've been quietly working alongside Coventry City Council, who have operated the country park for a while now and have completed the first phase of a major investment in play infrastructure for the region.
Replacing the previous play area - sitting adjacent to the existing visitor centre - The West Lodge play feature is the main feature of the playground. It's an iconic structure packed with play value and is based on the architecture of the West Lodge of the Abbey. Visitors who follow the carriageway path pass under the archway and are met by the expansive views of the estate. Featuring slightly more challenging play items, it features a large tubular slide from a 3m deck, a firepole, a daredevil net tunnel over and various climbing routes throughout. you can see the CGI here.
This entirely bespoke play area also includes a wheelchair-accessible board walk leading to a covered deck space that has a shingled roof and rustic appearance. Inside there are sensory play items including speaking tubes, a percussive instrument and a sensory interactive board. The tower is designed to feel enclosed but retains views through and has a slide back to the bark chip area below. Some of the best play remains the simplest and for the little visitors, there is a fantastic toddler zip wire and some classic ground play for them to explore including log hops, balance beams and even a ground-based crawl tunnel through one of the structures.
One of our favourite additions is the multi-swing allowing visitors to swing towards each other and interact with other participants while playing. Featuring toddler, standard, nest and rope swing seats, this element caters for all ages and abilities.
Not forgetting the big kids among us, we've created loads of seating spaces throughout and they are strategically positioned to allow visitors to keep an eye on their children at play. The key here is, of course, for children to have fun, but then visiting parents can also relax too, knowing there is only one way in and out of the area ensuring kids are safe and contained.
This replacement play area has been well received by the local community and we can’t wait to return in the new year to begin construction on Phase 2, a more adventurous play space set deep within woodland and bordered by a meandering river, but only a short walk into the country park itself! And a few images of the finished build here.