Friday 19 July 2019

Works to Mapledurham Playing Fields

SE towards poplars & Hewett Avenue
View west towards St Peter's Avenue
Reading Borough Council's Landscape Plan works to improve the drainage and durability of Mapledurham Playing Fields' pitches are progressing.

A large portion of the pitch area is cordoned off for the works with heras fencing.

Following complaints from two runners I managed to get the positioning of the heras fencing altered to allow joggers access around the perimeter of the fields.

Although it is narrow in three places, at least now it is possible to avoid having to go into the wooded area with its tripping hazards for joggers.

Parallel with Chazey Road looking east
Photo Thursday evening 
I am currently trying to sort out another problem - that of dog poo bin provision.

On one of my visits last week I noticed that the bin next to the hall's entrance door was over the brim, in need of emptying.

The collection regime is meant to be daily during the week, though I'd guess that it hadn't been emptied earlier that day.

Someone at the council removed dog poo bins very recently from MPF without putting up notices informing dog walkers that they should now use the regular bins for the waste, or informing the MPF Management Committee. This may account for some dog poo bags having been tied on the heras fencing, and others having been thrown threw into the fenced off area.

Scabiosa flowers in the orchard at MPF
I have asked officers to review the placement and provision of bins, plus to add signage clarifying that dog waste should be put in the bins. The council needs to make it as easy as possible for dog walkers to dispose of the dog poo as in a responsible way.
Looking west towards Hewett Avenue from next to CTFC's store

New 'trim trail' parallel with Hewett Avenue
A new perimeter footpath is currently being installed along the boundary line adjacent to Hewett Avenue. This is for the 'trim trail' (a fitness trail around MPF) the idea for which was supported by many in the consultation. Heras fencing is around the works area, but as soon as a section of the path is completed, the fencing will be removed, opening it up for use.

Three benches have been removed to fit in a football pitch for use this winter. Officers have said that a temporary bench will be installed by the new footpath at the south end of the playing fields.

During the works to the pitches the range of facilities is temporarily reduced. However once completed there will be a broader range of facilities and activities to support greater use of the playing fields.

One the new central footpath is installed next year together with the avenue of trees, new benches will be installed along it.

Reading Borough Council has a page with updates about the works. You may also wish to have a look at the FAQ.

An RBC officer has responded to my request to assess the provision of bins across MPF and the need for signs. There are 7 bins, two of which were behind fencing for a period (south west corner next to southern most exit on to Hewett Avenue, and the other one is half way along boundary with Hewett Avenue, although the first of these is now accessible).

The bins are now being emptied regularly, with plenty of capacity. Since the bins are being used for general rubbish and also dog poo bags, therefore officers feel there is no need for education of dog walkers, so no signs will be put up.