Health and wellbeing

Funding level: Up to £1,000


Little Shelford has a population of around 800 people. The demographic of the village has dramatically changed in recent years with more young families moving into the village. This has put pressure on the provision of local sporting and recreational facilities.

The existing playground equipment at Little Shelford’s Recreation Ground is old, underused and in need of modernisation. Some equipment is over 30 years old, and much is dilapidated and barely functioning.

As a group of local volunteers, we have formed The Wale Playground Action Group with the intention of renovating our playground. We have carried out questionnaires and consultations to obtain an understanding of the community's feelings towards the current facilities and their ideas for a new playspace.

The consensus was:
- few people used the playground because of the state of the current facilities
- there was little to offer children aged under 3 and over 8 years old
- what was on offer was in such a bad condition that there was no inspiration to use it

Our aim is to entirely renovate the playground. The current equipment will be removed, and brand new and innovative playground equipment will be installed for children of all ages to enjoy!

The Vision

The vision for the renovation of the playspace is to create an outdoor learning experience with stimulated play and equipment to enhance productive social interaction.

The equipment will be suitable for all ages: zip wire, pyramid climbing net, ground-level trampoline, merry-go-round, a toddler zone with imaginative sensory experiences, and landscaped undulations with tunnels. The wildlife corner will be a quiet space, surrounded by native plants to encourage insects and bugs, and provide a sensory experience of smell and colour.

The project seeks to bring the playground up to standard with its immediate surroundings. The Recreation Ground is approximately 7 acres with a cricket pitch, football pitches, bowling green, and basketball hoop. The River Cam borders the recreation ground, with woodland and a riverside walk developed by the village Wildlife Group.

Most of the community’s outdoor sporting and recreational activities are focused on this site. Along with the recently constructed sports pavilion, the addition of the new playspace will create a much-needed complete community outdoor space for our village.

Benefit to the local community

The facilities in their current state are underused and attract very few visitors. Through a 5-stage consultation process, the design of the playspace and the equipment chosen by the children will provide a new lease of life for the playground, and significantly increase users.

The new playspace will offer provision for toddlers to teenagers, thereby broadening interaction of age groups. By creating a facility catering for the needs of older children, it will provide teenagers with a safe and attractive location to meet and socialise.

Inclusive items such as basket swings, wide slides, trampolines, mounds & tunnels are included in the design, making the playspace usable by both able and non-able-bodied children.

The new playspace will enhance community cohesion by providing a complete asset at the heart of the village. The village cricket and football teams, local schools and societies who regularly use the Recreation Ground will have the added benefit of the new playspace.


We have held many fundraising events eg coffee mornings, quiz nights and magic nights, which have all been supported by the community. We have received a number of grant applications already and funding received from the AVIVA Community Fund would be put towards the purchase of the playground equipment.

Vote for us!

Please vote for us to secure funding for a new playground for Little Shelford! We are three-quarters of the way to reaching our target and with the help of the AVIVA Community Fund, we could start work on the project in early 2018.

Little Shelford Parish Council

We have been delighted with the involvement of the community. All fundraising events have been heavily supported and local children have contributed their design ideas and got involved in the decision-making. We hope to create a long-lasting space for the whole community to use now and in the future

Location: Whittlesford Road, Little Shelford, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom