Described as “an Oasis” for local children and the community of Southmead, The Ranch is an adventure playground, which also features a football pitch, slide, zip wire, bike track and a range of indoor facilities including a pool table.
In danger of complete closure due to cutbacks in 2018, the playground is now managed by the Southmead Development Trust. The Ranch, which offers a range of free, fully inclusive services, was in need of some love, attention and investment after vandalism and lack of resources left the playground overgrown and burnt-out.
Luckily, BBC’s DIY SOS, along with a variety of volunteers from across the country, answered their call for help. Armed with drills, screwdrivers, wood and materials, the volunteers worked tirelessly for 9 days (and a large portion of the nights), to revitalise the whole area with a range of new structures, repairs, and equipment. The undergrowth was cleared, the pond re-landscaped and an outdoor forest school was created.
The Ranch also had a sports pitch that was damaged and in need of new equipment. Whilst the surface was re-levelled and resurfaced to create a new multi-sport games pitch, Net World Sports provided and delivered a range of sports equipment including FORZA Alu60 Football Goals and a FORZA Basketball Hoop System.
Perfect for small-sided matches, The FORZA Goalposts feature scratch-proof all-weather frames and HDPE nets that are completely weatherproof. Great for solo as well as team games, the FORZA Basketball Hoop System is made with water-resistant materials, has an adjustable height, and is easy to manoeuvre thanks to the HDPE wheels, making them the perfect addition for those in the community to use all year round.
Overall, the project and rebuild was a huge success. With The Ranch’s original facilities replaced or upgraded, the area now boasts a live music booth, chill out zones and a recording studio. With an array of new structures and equipment, it is hoped that the local community and future generations will enjoy and benefit greatly from spending time at the revitalised Ranch!
By: Andrew Griffiths