THE NEW outdoor gym in Coley Recreation Ground is now complete and ready for residents to work out on!
Coley Recreation Ground in west Reading has benefited from a £65K investment.
Keep fit enthusiasts as well as people looking for a free way to get more active can now access:
· A wheelchair accessible Smart Energy Hand Bike, which generates electricity to charge a phone and contains smart technology to count hits;
· A training rig with over 11 stations, great for all ages and abilities;
· A recumbent bike, spinning bike and cross trainer.
The new gym has been designed to offer free fitness for all and offers a mix of robust equipment to suit people of varying ages and abilities. It offers both single and multi-use units as well as equipment for seated and standing users.
The outdoor gym is already proving popular with local residents. Annie O’Neill, who lives in Coley Park, said: “I voted for the gym to be installed and I’m really, really happy it is here! I hope lots and lots of people use it. I will certainly come over and work out and I think it is a great thing for the local community.”
Exercise enthusiast Simon Micuda, who has recently moved to Reading, came across the outdoor gym on one of his walks. He said: “It is really good to work out in nature. Working out in a gym gets boring! I’m glad this is here – it has become like a second home for me now!”
Cllr Karen Rowland, Reading’s Lead Member for Culture, Heritage and Recreation, said: “I’m delighted to announce the new outdoor gym at Coley Park Recreation Ground is ready for everyone to work out!
“We know that parks are one of the most valued amenities in Reading and can also provide great opportunities for people to keep active. This new outdoor gym offers and encourages free fitness opportunities for a wide range of the park’s users. Additionally, there is good provision for those with accessibility issues so that the widest possible range of users can benefit.
“I’m pleased that we were able to put such a significant sum into Coley Recreation Ground. It is one of our key priorities that we provide high quality, accessible equipment in as many of our parks as possible. I’d like to especially thank the ward councillors in Coley who listened to what locals wanted and were so instrumental and involved in making this project happen.
“This is an exciting and worthwhile investment for the area and will benefit large numbers local people for years to come.”
Funding for the new outdoor gym has come through developer contributions from local redevelopment.
Watch residents speaking about the outdoor gym here:
Photos of the new outdoor gym are available for use here: https://flic.kr/s/aHsmHJDhzF
Find out more about TGO, the Great Outdoor Gym Company here: www.tgogc.com
Funding for park and playground improvements across the borough has been secured by the Council from developers who made a contribution to the Council’s Community Infrastructure Fund. Reading communities were consulted last summer on how money collected from local planning developments should be spent. The top ranked schemes, including Coley Recreation Ground in west Reading, were approved at the Council’s Policy Meeting on 26th November 2018.
Policy Committee agreed that £65K be invested to improve Coley Recreation Ground.
Other Playground investment agreed includes:
· £100K – Canal Way (replacing Avon Place play area)
· £100K – Ivydene play area, located next to Portman Road
· £95K – Cintra Park, south Reading
· £155K – Long Barn Lane Recreation Ground
In addition to the investment for leisure and play from the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) – the contribution developers, that has benefited Coley Recreation Ground, the work complements the Council’s wider £2.7M boost for Reading’s parks and playgrounds which is part of the Council’s capital investment programme over the next 3 years.
Just over £1.6 million will contribute to the expansion, replacement or upgrading of playground equipment in parks and play areas across the borough. With a focus on areas in most need of new equipment and a big drive on providing accessible equipment for children of all abilities, particularly in areas where there is little provision for children with disabilities.
Reading’s two main parks, Prospect Park and Palmer Park, are priorities for improvements to play equipment, including the provision or replacement of obsolete equipment for children with disabilities. Park users and local residents will be consulted on the type of equipment they want to see.