A SCHOOL has helped to change the lives of its pupils with a new state-of-the-art play park.

Staff, students and parents from Bleasdale School, in Silverdale, eagerly waited as Morecambe FC’s goalie Barry Roach cut the ribbon to their new play area on Thursday.

The school, which caters for around 30 children and young adults with complex and profound learning difficulties, had fundraised nearly £115,000 for the project to become a reality.

Headteacher Kairen Dexter gave a small speech thanking everyone who made the new community space possible.

“Everyone’s just been so excited about the park,” she said.

“Especially because this is a park like no other, it’s accessible to every single child.”

Deputy Head Kirsty Ashton said the park was designed especially to make it accessible for all abilities, particularly wheelchair users. “I don’t know any other park where wheelchair users can get to the top of the ramp,” she said “Most of these pupils have been restricted all their lives and have not been able to join in on the fun, instead they just sit and watch but now they can get involved,” she said.

Built on the school’s grounds the colourful play area provides a lot of activities for the students, including a swing set, an inclusive roundabout, two slides, and a shallow climbing ramp access.

“We hope that this can be a place where parents and our pupils can come and enjoy the park outside of school hours and during the weekend, “ added Mrs Ashton.

Caroline Donnelly, who attended the special opening and whose daughter Jess attends Bleasdale, said the park was “truly amazing”.

“Going to a park for us is a big deal,” she said “Jess absolutely loves going but it can get quite panicky, so to find a space like this where she has the freedom to walk around is amazing. She’s never been on a slide so when that happens I think this will be her favourite thing to do.

“Also the colours are great and you know it’s a safe place for the children.”

Miss Donnelly added that the park provided an “ordinary opportunity” for the pupils which they were not able to do before.

Sutcliffe Play, playground equipment supplier from West Yorkshire, helped to design and built the park.

Simon Sharp, area sales manager at Sutcliffe Play, said it was a “real pleasure and delight to work on the project”.