I’ve rediscovered the joys of an adventure playground

COMMENT: Ask for ID - it’s better to be safe than sorry

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Some folks, myself included, can often feel intimidated by the thought of getting all hot and sweaty at the gym.

In the end, it can feel almost like a trip to the dentist. Certainly not pleasant.

So since I moved to Fareham I’ve been using the park for exercise as I bid to get fitter. I run round like a bat out of hell trying to get rid of the guilt over food I’ve consumed during the day.

After one particular mammoth session, I plonked myself down in an area adjacent to the children’s adventure playground and found myself gazing longingly at the kids having fun on the swings.

It became deserted as they all scuttled off home for their tea, so I thought it was now or never and jumped on one of the swings.

I had an awesome time going back and forth, soaring higher and higher and getting that funny butterfly feeling in my stomach as I tried to touch the sky.

I wonder if children these days use the parks as much as they did 25 or more years ago, before the arrival of video games and the like?

I loved adventure playgrounds as a kid. On the Witch’s Hat we all used to fight to get on, spinning faster and faster until you actually thought it would come out of the ground.

It seems so dangerous now when I think about it. No wonder it was banned in the 1980s.

The roundabout at the Salterns rec was also one of my haunts. My school chums and I liked to lay across it, then make it go as rapidly as we could until we all got really dizzy and felt sick.

I also had affection for the five or six-seater rocking horse at Petersfield Lake. These are no longer seen in parks, probably banished because of health and safety.

Since I re-discovered the joys of the playground again, I’ve been back to try out the slide at dusk. I wouldn’t want anyone to see me on that one!

Next time, though, I’m really going to go for it and ask another adult to come on the see-saw with me.

Any takers? You’re never too old for fun, I draw the line at the sandpit though – you can never be sure a child hasn’t weed in it.