Children rush to try out Hartlepool navy museum's new play area
Pint-sized pirates and small sailors rushed to try out a new play area at Hartlepool’s National Museum of the Royal Navy – and gave it a big thumbs-up.
The new feature in the shape of a ship was officially opened at the town’s main tourist attraction on Friday and youngsters could not wait to climb aboard.
It includes rope ladders, look-out posts, decks, hammocks, swings and slides which are proving particularly popular.
Younger visitors from two years old have their own mini ship and other new pieces of play equipment include a sea spinner bowl, sea raft see-saw and carousel with safety bars, which can be enjoyed by children in wheelchairs and disabled users.
Roslyn Adamson, general manager at NMRN Hartlepool, told visitors: “We are committed as a national museum to developing the site and we are doing so as a priority with Hartlepool Borough Council.
“While we think about the longer term development we have also thought about our family offer which is why we brought forward this playground.
“The idea is to give you reason to come back and visit time and again over the years while we plan the bigger project.”
She thanked funders including the Tees Valley Combined Authority, the Sir James Knott Trust, Catherine Cookson Trust, Red Gap Wind Farm Ltd, and also Hartlepool Borough Council for their ongoing support.
It was officially opened by the Regional Royal Navy Commander, Commodore Phil Waterhouse.
He said: “You have only got to look at how the children are playing on it to see how much they like it.”
Six-year-old Evan Close, from Hartlepool, who helped cut a cake for the opening, said he liked the ship’s slides best.
Rachel Creevy, who took her daughter Alice, aged four, said: “It’s lovely. We were involved in the consultation so it’s nice to see the end product.”
Julie Simons, from Hartlepool, who was there with her children Henry Simons, 10, and 18-month-old Fearne Middleton, said: “I think it’s great. My eldest son loves the slide at the front because it’s very fast.”