Mystery of ‘missing’ swing resolved at new play area

The mystery of a swing feared stolen from a new play area has now been resolved.

We reported on Monday how the new Swinton Greenway park opened last week, with a wide range of equipment including climbing frames, slides and play castles. But within hours of it opening on Thursday a swing had vanished and play frames daubed with graffiti.

Families living nearby spoke of their disappointment that it had been damaged so soon, saying the park is ‘a great addition’ for the recently upgraded 7km off-road path that runs from Monton to Swinton and is one of the city’s key cycling and walking routes.

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But thankfully it turns out that the swing wasn’t stolen, but had been taken by contractors, who were swapping it for a younger version for toddlers to use. The graffiti has now also been cleared from the site.

John Searle, director of place at Salford City Council said: “The swing was not stolen. It was removed by contractors to be replaced with a more toddler friendly type of swing, as part of snagging works and feedback from park users.

Graffiti on the climbing frame
Graffiti on the climbing frame

“The new swing was back in place yesterday. The graffiti was minor and has been cleaned, however this is a real asset for the local community so if anyone has any information on who was responsible for the graffiti please let us know or report it anonymously to Crimestoppers so action can be taken against them.”

He explained that the previous wooden play equipment at the site became unsafe and was removed in 2018.

“It was always our intention to replace it with more accessible modern equipment suitable for a range of ages and abilities and install safety surfaces below once work on Swinton Greenway was complete,” he said.

Families have flocked to the new Swinton Greenway park
Families have flocked to the new Swinton Greenway park

“The brand-new play area has climbing frames, slides, play castles, roundabouts, an aerial runway, an activity trail, a tyre swing and traditional swings, new safety surfaces and is fully accessible for wheelchair users, prams and buggies.

“It has been funded through Section 106 planning obligations money from the nearby Bellway Homes development as part of giving back to the community.”

A celebration of the new park will be planned in the near future.

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