Coronation Park slide closes to the public for two months

Residents are making time for a final trip down the iconic and popular miracle slide in Coronation Park.

MILESTONE: Local residents including Valmar clients, SPIN Foundation mascot Lionel and Yass APEX club life member John Hedges stand by Coronation Park's miracle slide for the last time. Photo: Hannah Sparks

MILESTONE: Local residents including Valmar clients, SPIN Foundation mascot Lionel and Yass APEX club life member John Hedges stand by Coronation Park's miracle slide for the last time. Photo: Hannah Sparks

The park will close to the public on Monday, October 21 until mid-December, for the council to remove and replace the slide and other playground equipment.

"Other park facilities such as the picnic area and toilets will still be open for use during the construction period," a media release from Yass Valley Council said.

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Yass resident of 75 years Neil O'Mara gathered with residents to say farewell to the slide on Thursday. He remembered playing on the miracle slide and bringing his children to do the same.

Yesterday, he watched his grandchildren spiral down the yellow and green slide for the last time. Many other residents couldn't believe the day had finally come for the slide to be removed.

The miracle slide will be replaced with the Lofty Castle Skytower by Moduplay, a large climbing frame with five enclosed slides coming down from each side.

The other playground equipment will be replaced by a new swing set, maze, animal puzzle, musical chimes, whirly rope, flowers, voice tubes, shopfront, timber stepping bridge, drum, xylophone and curved mirror.

The miracle slide was donated by Yass Apex Club about 35 years ago.

Club life member John Hedges said past Apex members were disappointed by the slide's removal but understood the council's concerns with safety.

"We would have liked to have seen different measures taken to make the slide safe rather than remove it, but the council said it's not possible," Mr Hedges said.

"We think the new equipment is good and we are supportive of Yass High School's effort to turn the slide into a piece of public art, but haven't been consulted yet."

The club hopes the slide remains in one piece and had offered to take back ownership of the slide from the council.

FAREWELL: Grandparents, parents, children and Yass APEX Club life member John Hedges (back, black and red shirt) farewell Coronation Park's iconic and popular miracle slide. Photo: Hannah Sparks

FAREWELL: Grandparents, parents, children and Yass APEX Club life member John Hedges (back, black and red shirt) farewell Coronation Park's iconic and popular miracle slide. Photo: Hannah Sparks

Yass High School principal Linda Langton said the students' "aim is to provide a reminder for the Yass community of the fun times they know that everyone associates with the miracle slide."

"It's not a project that the students want to rush, they'll take their time to get it perfect before handing it over to the council and the community," Yass High School principal Mrs Langton said.

Where possible, the panels and parts of the other playground equipment will be integrated into other playgrounds around Yass, the council said.

The community was invited to vote on the design of the new playground in June.

"Council was so appreciative of the input that we received when we put the call out and asked what the community would like to see in the new look Coronation Park," Yass Valley mayor Rowena Abbey said.

The council approved the design as its ordinary meeting on June 26. All councillors were in favour, except for Cr McManus, and Cr Abbey, who was absent.

Cr McManus said he couldn't support the installation of the new slide because there was "nothing wrong with the old one. Generations of Yass people have loved the existing slide and I don't think there is anything wrong with it."

The slide has been non-compliant since 2016 and the other equipment has expired its 15-year life-span, according to the council.

"We're really looking forward to having the new playground up and running in time for the Christmas holidays so residents and visitors to Yass Valley can enjoy it over the break," Cr Abbey said.

The new playground is funded by a $130,000 NSW government grant, matched by the council.

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