Cheshire East Children’s Centres

Completion of feasibility studies looking at the outdoor spaces of nine Children’s Centres owned by Cheshire East Council, and how to enhance play and learning opportunities. The purpose of the study was to advise on the expenditure of funding that the council had secured to carry out a series of improvements.

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The project initially involved carrying out a site appraisal and attending a full consultation meeting with the centre manager and key consultees to develop a design brief. This was translated into a scaled concept design including both priority and longer term desirable features. A cost estimate was produced for the priority, Phase 1 package of works to be implemented using the current funding, together with precedent images for proposed play features and landscape works and details of recommended suppliers.

The proposed layouts for the outdoor spaces focussed on imaginative, natural, sensory elements such as sand, water and musical play, meeting the two specific design requirements identified by the council:

  • To provide a safe, exciting, sensory and natural environment, which will include areas for physical, social, emotional and intellectual development for all children aged under 5 years
  • To provide space which allows parents/carers to play alongside their children.

Client: Cheshire East Council

Project completed at Austin-Smith:Lord