Playground for pensioners approved
Published 10/02/2010 | 02:34
The first "pensioners' playground" in London is to be built after planning permission was granted for an outdoor gym for the over-60s.
The £40,000 facility in Hyde Park will feature fitness equipment designed to provide gentle exercise.
It will have a cross-trainer, body-flexer, free runner, sit-up bench, flex wheel and exercise bike.
Play areas for older people are popular in China and parts of Europe, but this is the first of its kind in London.
The equipment will be free to use and will be set up in the park's Pavilion tennis and bowls centre.
While the under-60s will not be banned from joining in the fun, the site will be clearly signposted Hyde Park Senior Playground.
The project was proposed by the Knightsbridge Association, a local residents' association, and will be funded by Westminster City Council.
The first pensioner's playground in Europe opened in Berlin in 2008. It was designed by Renate Zeumer, an engineer who noticed older people in China using simple pieces of government-provided equipment to exercise in parks, on the streets and in subway stations.
The UK's first pensioners' playground opened in Manchester in the same year.
Work on the London playground begins in the next few weeks and the site is due to open in spring.