Bold plans for Seaspray

SEASPRAY’S reputation as one of Gippsland’s favourite coastal playgrounds will be enhanced with the announcement of plans to build an adventure play space in the town.

The state-of-the-art adventure playground will be located on the foreshore reserve in an area that was formerly occupied by the Seaspray Caravan Park, adjacent to the new barbecue pavilion and the soon-to-be relocated Seaspray Surf Life Saving Club.

The playground is the brainchild of the Seaspray Community Playground Committee, which was formed in early 2014 as a sub-committee of the Seaspray Reserves Committee of Management.

Committee member Zoe Curtis said the group was made up of a small but passionate group of like-minded locals who realised the re-location of the caravan park offered an opportunity to regenerate the foreshore in a way which would define the town for years to come.

“When the caravan park moved it created an open space that was perfectly located between the beach and the main residential part of the town,” she said.

“The majority of that area will be maintained as parkland however the opportunity to also use this space for a playground was too obvious to ignore. And given the scale of the area we had at our disposal, we decided to dream big.

Mrs Curtis said the committee expected the playground would become a “destination playground” for Seaspray locals, the wider Wellington Shire community and visitors.

“Seaspray only has a permanent population of a few hundred however that increases to a few thousand in summer when holidaymakers and day-trippers flock to the town,” she said.

“Seaspray has the best beach in the Wellington Shire and it will soon have the best playground as well. It’s a natural fit.”

Using local resources has been a key consideration for the committee, which has awarded the design contract to former Sale local and now Melbourne-based landscape architect Brendan Papworth.

Mr Papworth’s initial concept plan encourages imaginative, incidental and exploitative play and reflects the surrounding coastal environment by using natural and organic materials such as timber, rocks and rope.

“Every member of our committee has grown up holidaying at Seaspray and understands the importance of using cutting-edge design in a way that complements, rather than intrudes on, Seaspray’s foreshore environment,” Mrs Curtis said.

“For a small town Seaspray has always punched above its weight and this playground will continue to ensure Seaspray is the very best it can be.”

The Seaspray Playground Committee will spend this year and the first half of 2016 sourcing funding for the playground and hopes the playground will be built by late 2016 in time for the 2016-17 summer holidays.