Hadley Park, Telford

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Children and adults can enjoy a workout together thanks to the innovative design of an outside gym installed at Hadley park.
Sunshine Gym worked with residents, parish councillors, the local authority and outside play consultants to develop the open space.
Thought to be the first of its type in the UK, the public outdoor gym features separate areas for children and adults.
But with the two sides facing each other, all age groups are encouraged to get fit in the outdoors together as the equipment is mirrored in both gyms.
Safety factors considered by Sunshine Gym included the location of the children’s equipment so adults can supervise while taking advantage of the health park themselves.
A fence also surrounds the children’s area so that it is safely enclosed. Playground markings mean youngsters can take part in additional games and activities as well as make use of the multi gym fitness equipment.
On the opposite side, equipment for adults and young people include a rower, double health walker and double slalom skier alongside a sky stepper to get the heart pumping with cardiovascular routines.
Parallel rails, double squat push and Sunshine Gym’s combi pull down challenger and power push offer a strength workout, coupled with an accessible arm and pedal bike suitable for wheelchair users and those who may have difficulties with mobility.
In between the sections, a sprint track was marked out.
Councillor Derek White, chairman of the health scrutiny committee at Telford and Wrekin Council, said: “The community decided they wanted something that was a bit different, something that was healthy and that the community could engage with.
“They thought it was important to provide for adults and young people, but also for children as well.”
The park is being maintained by Hadley and Leegomery Parish Council, which held public consultations over the park design with development consultancy apT, part of Telford and Wrekin Council.  
Hadley and Leegomery Parish Council chairman Malcolm Smith said: “The new gym has increased awareness of the park to the local community and has already become a popular community venue which the community value.
“The park is now used as a community meeting point to meet old friends and new, and exercise together.
“Being in the outside this healthy park aims to connect people to nature where they may unwind in the park and exercise for free to maximise the free health benefits on their doorstep and positively impact upon the community.”
Bespoke seating and signage, designed, built and installed by Sunshine Gym, completed the near-£40,000 health park project.
Councillor Hilda Rhodes, Telford and Wrekin Council’s cabinet member for parks, green spaces and the natural environment, said: “The gym facility has transformed an underused open space into a well-used healthy park.
“This provides opportunities to exercise and for quiet contemplation to support mental health and has become a park with a purpose.”

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