Playground politics as election candidate launches 'unnecessary' petition

more Kings Heath local news

A candidate in the upcoming local elections has been accused of stirring up fears over the future of a local playground.

The Lib Dem candidate says the children's swings, slide and climbing frame in Kings Heath Park are to be axed – but his rivals from the ruling Labour group say the play area has already been saved.

After its launch during the final fortnight of campaigning, the online petition has attracted more than 1,000 signatures. It lists a number of Birmingham parks play areas that are apparently due to be closed during the coming year. What is not made clear however is that Martin Mullaney, the promoter of the petition on Change.org is actually a candidate in the local elections.

“The list of potential closures has been around since 2014,” says Labour councillor for Moseley and Kings Heath ward Claire Spencer.

Since then she says, the Labour candidate Lisa Trickett had created a solution to remove the immediate threat.

Lisa particularly worked via the community partnership, she says, to turn an underused play area elsewhere in the district into a community garden. “In so doing, this enables us to hold on to the Kings Heath Park play area – a creative solution that recognises need and local context,” says Cllr Spencer.

“I do not recognise the scenario as presented in the petition and I am a bit gutted that some brilliant work by local citizens has been dragged into a type of politicking that does not need to exist,” she adds.

There are five candidates standing in Moseley and Kings Heath ward. You can see the full list here.

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