A SCHEME costing hundreds of thousands of pounds will transform part of the Alver Valley.
Gosport Borough Council has chosen its contractors – who cannot yet be named – to develop the landscape and build a major play area in the country park at a Community Board meeting.
The play area will have an area for under-fives and a separate space for older children. That area will be divided into two – one more suited for youngsters aged five to nine and one more suited to over-10s.
Toilets will be installed and dogs will be banned from the area.
There could also be somewhere selling food and drink in the future.
There will be an array of amusements on offer at the site, including zip wires and 12m high slide.
The play area will also cater for the disabled.
Earlier this year, the council put out a consultation, to which 861 people responded and ideas were taken on.
Councillor Graham Burgess, chairman of the Community Board, is confident the development will be given planning permission.
He says work could start as early as January next year and the play area could be ready by the summer.
Cllr Burgess said: ‘We were pleased with the phenomenal response from the consultation.
‘As a council, this development shows that we are commitment to providing facilities for all ages.
‘The play area will be no cost to people and they will only have to pay for car parking. If people get a pass for the Alver Valley and the seafront car parks, it works out at just 20p per day.
‘We are opening up the whole of the Alver Valley. There is the BMX park on the Grange Road side and now a play area on the western side.
‘We also hope to have a garden centre there in the future.
Cllr Mark Hook, leader of Gosport Borough Council added: ‘It’s a much-needed development because of how densely populated Gosport is.
‘It’s important people have the opportunity to walk in the countryside environment and to make a day out of it.
‘There will be play equipment for all ages and it will attract families who can enjoy the beautiful countryside area.’
Lib Dem Cllr Rob Hylands has welcomed the project, but would also like to see other play parks given some attention.
He said: ‘It’s going to give us a nice facility but some of the other play parks also need a bit of TLC.’
Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage has also commended the council’s decision.
Ms Dinenage said: ‘Already, Alver Valley Country Park is a joy all year round, enabling local residents to enjoy Gosport’s wildlife through the changing seasons.
‘A play area for local children would be a real asset to the community and families living nearby.’