A phased consultation with
Alderney residents was organised by Sarah Austin (Project Officer for the Bourne
Stream Partnership) and Kate Mitchell (Poole’s Bourne Valley Ranger)
during August and September 2005, in order to:
Assess the level of local interest in
improvement works at Alderney Recreation Ground (Bourne Valley Park)
Ensure that plans progress in line with local hopes and expectations, and to
Meet the requirements of potential funding partners
The full report (PDF 170kb), complete with an
appendix listing individual comments and notes is
available for those interested.
It is also
reproduced below, without the appendix.
report has been circulated by e-mail to local
councillors, council officers, and to a potential
were presented that described a plan to create a wide, terraced channel
carrying the Bourne Stream through the long field at the park,
together with the introduction of bridges, weirs and a pond, formal and
informal seating areas, footpaths and lighting.
Some recreational facilities were suggested for the lower field with
the aim of stimulating further discussion and residents’ own ideas.
to residents were as personal and as informal as possible:
12th & 17th August:
an informal user consultation was carried out at the park during the school holidays, on hot & sunny days.
A total of 11 hours was spent over the three-day period.
Very few people were seen to be using the park.
In order to ensure that only current users were reached at this
stage, the consultation was not publicised, and it might be assumed that the
low level of usage is the norm, reducing further during term time and
a ‘pilot’ questionnaire was handed to those adults met on site during
(above) but due to the low volume of users the questionnaire was later also
distributed to 100 residents in the Evering & Manor Avenue area.
It was originally intended that it would soon be distributed more
widely, but it is now believed that those not yet engaged, i.e. residents of
Bourne Estate and the outer ‘catchment’ (some 9,000 homes in total)
might be more difficult to reach at this early stage, and unlikely to
respond to a questionnaire. Their
views will be sought by other methods.
12th – 14th
September: a consultation with residents was held at the Rossmore
Library & Learning Centre, Herbert Avenue.
The event was publicised through the use of posters at all access
points to the park and on surrounding streets, at community centres, toddler
groups, schools, the local GP surgery, the Library & Leisure Centre. Notices were sent to the existing e-mailing list, and by
letter to those who had already responded to the questionnaire.
A6 fliers were distributed to the students at Manorside and St
Josephs RC Schools, and left at the Library and GP surgery.
The event was also advertised on the Partnership’s website (the
project web page was visited by 81 internet users in the 10-day period
leading up to and during the consultation).
Residents were invited to meet
with Kate and Sarah upstairs at the library during various set hours (3.5
hours on each of the three days) ranging between 9.00am and 7.00pm.
The consultation was informal, with proposals illustrated on a range
of A3 & A4 laminated sheets, and described on a personal basis by either
Kate or Sarah; any concerns expressed were noted and addressed. Contact details have been retained to keep residents up-dated
Just 25 users were interviewed at the on-site consultation, 14 of
them (56%) under the age of 16.
Response to the pilot questionnaire reached 48%.
A further nine questionnaires have been received back since the
public consultation (a supply was made available).
Forty-seven people attended
the consultation in the library and/or responded in some other way (via
phone or email) to the proposals; some of these had also completed
The views of 95 residents (81
adults, 14 young people) have been collected thus far.
are grouped by ‘young people’ and ‘adults’. Young people’s
comments were noted during conversations on site.
There are too few for any meaningful analysis, and so they have
simply been transcribed in an abbreviated form and attached as part of a
six-page appendix (available in the PDF document above).
are the responses from a total of 57 questionnaires returned, which simply asked residents about
their use of the site and then to score various proposals from 1-5 in terms
of “improving your personal use & enjoyment of the space”:
from the questionnaire (adults)
Age Group of respondents
70% are aged 55+, i.e.
38% aged 55-64 yrs
32% aged 65+
No response from residents between
Just one response from the
16-24 yrs age group.
Usage – frequency
On average 6.8 times a week
Usage – purpose
45% for dog walking
42% for informal or family
12% use the park to reach
shops, library etc
How much would these
proposals increase your personal use and enjoyment of the park, on a scale from 1-5:
Proposal (in order of
Creation of a terraced
stream channel with informal seating, weirs and pond
out of 5
Creation of formal seating
areas with litterbins
out of 5
Installation of lighting
out of 5
Improved signage and access
(a) for pedestrians/cyclists
out of 5
Creation of dual-use
footpaths/cycleways along and across the space
out of 5
Improved signage and access
(b) for vehicles, with
provision of car parking
out of 5
were proposed based on the previous consultation with young people:
Children's Play Park
Small fishing lake
Rugged Wooden Outdoor
recurring themes have been pulled from comments taken from the questionnaire
distributed to residents, and from the consultation, and they can be
1. Good local interest in and support for the project overall; the response
rate to the “pilot” questionnaire (48%) is particularly encouraging.
2. A belief
that whatever is achieved is likely to be spoiled by vandalism without
proper policing, either by a full-time park warden or by a more reactive
concern about vehicular access (mainly related to travellers);
A wish for something to be done about the use of motorcycles and mini motos
on the site, coupled with the realisation that only Police action will have
a bearing on such behaviour;
A good number of those attending
the library consultation would have liked a discussion on the future of the
Pavilion; it was explained that this was not in our remit.
All comments have been transcribed
(and abbreviated) and are attached as a six-page appendix to the full report.
is a high level of support for the proposals from those that have shown an
interest, coupled with some serious and widespread concerns involving
anti-social behaviour and misuse of the site.
Consultation with such a
small sample of residents, particularly young people, fails to provide us with statistically significant or
particularly reliable data; ideally further work would include a school project designed to have children developing findings so far and involving parents
and grandparents in a vision-building exercise.
It is hoped that such involvement will also promote a sense of
inclusion and ‘ownership’.
In the meantime, we will continue to communicate updates to those residents
already involved in the process, and make efforts to engage more by ad hoc
methods. This would include,
for instance, conversing with people on site whenever possible, and during
term time interviewing those parents/carers and children using the Safe
Route to School that crosses the park.