More than one thousand people have already responded to a questionnaire about the future use of Abbey Park on Torquay Seafront.

Since the eight week consultation opened on Monday 6 October, 1100 people have given their views about whether family friendly facilities should be created on the front green.

Major ground works are currently being carried out as part of South West Water's Bathing Water Improvement Project. Torbay Council is now taking the opportunity to find out if the public would like a themed play park on the green or if they would prefer it to be reinstated to a grassed area.

Torbay Mayor Gordon Oliver said: "I'm really keen to investigate the possibility of creating an area for families, which could include traditional play equipment, seasonal water play and refreshment facilities.

"Paignton's Geoplay Park has been a resounding success and a similar attraction could encourage more residents and visitors to come to this prime location in Torquay.

"The most important thing is to hear from you about what you want and how you want to use this public area. We want to ensure that the future of Abbey Park is influenced by the people who use it and we will try and find the best way of delivering it."

If the majority of people are in favour of a themed play area then feedback will form part of a feasibility study, which will determine the scale of the play park and facilities.

Executive Lead for Safer Communities, Highways, Environment and Sport, Councillor Robert Excell, said: "Unfortunately Torbay Council is not in a position to build and maintain a high quality destination play park, so if this is what people want it will need to generate an income to support the initial build costs and future maintenance costs.

"We want as many people as possible to take part in this questionnaire so we can find out whether a play facility is a popular option and views on the scale and type of facilities people would like to see. We would also like to know if people would be prepared to pay an entrance fee for a higher quality play park and if they think refreshments or a cafe should be available in Abbey Park.

"Alternatively most people may prefer it to be reinstated to grass with bench seating or picnic tables and no play area."

A paper format questionnaire is available from local businesses around the park. An on-line version of the survey can be completed at www.torbay.gov.uk/consultation


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