COMPLETED work on the £250,000 royal-themed Astley Park play area will be unveiled in May.

The play area, commissioned by Chorley Council and being carried out by social enterprise Newground, is based on 'Royalists and Roundheads' in tribute to Lord Protector Oliver Cromwell who is rumoured to have once stayed at Astley Hall.

Work started in December and the new play area is based on a castle ruin using rough textured stone walls to form what would have been the rooms of a castle.

The play equipment will feature an enclosed kitchen area with a pig on a spit, half-buried pieces of old carvings, a drawbridge with stone turrets and arrow slits, zip wires, swings, a wall tower and many more pieces.

Part of the project will see Parklands High School pupils helping to build some features of the play space.

The school has chosen students to be involved in an eight-week work experience placement at the play area so they can put together a portfolio of evidence and use it for future reference when they leave school.

Members of the Whittle-le-Woods based Brothers of Charity organisation are also hoping be involved in planting and maintenance closer to the completion of the site.

Mark Grimshaw, contract manager at Newground, said: “This is a really exciting project and we are proud to be part of it.

“We have come up with a truly bespoke and interesting scheme which will not only extend the play provision within Chorley, but also enhance the landscape of Astley Park.

“As a Social Enterprise, it is great to involve local people in practical aspects of the project, and hopefully it will be a space which will be enjoyed for many years to come.”