What could be nicer than the sound of children having fun?
Their cries of delight as they enjoy the great outdoors in what is proving to be a super summer.
And where better for those youngsters to have some good old-fashioned fun than at a play area?
That’s exactly what’s been happening in Bedhampton. The XBoxes and PlayStations are gathering dust while the children are out enjoying the park in Bidbury Mead.
And there’s plenty to enjoy. It’s just had a £30,000 revamp and comes complete with a zipwire and other shiny new facilities.
But, as is so often the case, not everyone is happy.
Nearby residents say the noise is unbearable and goes on for up to 14 hours a day.
They claim adults and children can see into their homes from new purpose-built mounds.
And that because the park’s toilets close, people are simply using bushes at the end of the gardens.
Seemingly there’s no respite at night when the youngsters are replaced by sweary teenagers drinking and shouting.
The residents’ main complaint is that they were not consulted before the work was done.
It’s hard not to have sympathy with both sides of the argument here. fter all, who would want to live with constant noise from children while you were trying to enjoy a bit of piece and quiet in your garden?
And surely the sensible thing would have been to discuss the plans with the homeowners before they went ahead.
But it’s also hard to be critical of children getting out in the great outdoors and enjoying themselves. They’re only doing what comes naturally, which is to make a racket, as children have done for generations.
And as for the teenagers, well that’s a perpetual problem and one very hard to see a solution to – they’ll always go somewhere.
We can only hope that when the dust settles, the householders and children can find a way to rub along until it gets cold and the parks empty anyway.