THERE was excitement in Tidworth last week as a long-awaited play park opened its gates.

On Friday, October 26 town mayor and Wiltshire councillor Mark Connolly cut the ribbon on the Riverbourne Estate play area in Connolly Way.

Cllr Connolly was joined by the chair of the community engagement committee, Councillor Sue Fell, who welcomed eager children to the park.

Residents were consulted in December last year on the plans after Persimmon Homes teamed up with the town council to offer a plot of land for the playground.

And after the consultation, the authority made a few changes to the designs, incorporating a swing for disabled children and extra piece of equipment for the toddler age group.

The park also includes traditional slides and swings along with more modern play park equipment.

It was approved in April and the council had planned for it to be opened in 10 weeks, but delays pushed the launch back.

In a post on social media, Cllr Connolly said: “We are sorry for the delay in opening the park but safety of the children using it was our greatest concern. Remedial work on areas of concern are now complete and we hope the children of the estate have a great time using the equipment over the coming years.”

But after work was completed Cllr Connolly and local children made the most of new equipment during the end of the half term holidays.

Cllr Connolly said: “It was a pleasure to open the long awaited play park in Riverbourne Fields. We are now planning for the second play area on the estate and will again consult the residents on what equipment they want.”

And the opening has been welcomed by many families who have taken to Facebook to share their delight.