DESIGNS for a new play area at Pennington Flash Nature Reserve will be on show next Saturday (July 16) – with members of the public invited to come and have their say.

The proposals are part of a £2.4m makeover of the facilities at the local beauty spot, which will also include a new visitor centre and café.

Plans for the nature-themed adventure play area include new swings, climbing frames and zip lines – plus a central Toddler ‘Lake’ featuring play equipment modelled on swans and boats.

Pennington Flash play area plan

Plans will be on display near the existing playground from 12pm to 4pm, with local families and other park visitors welcome to take a look and give their feedback.

Leigh Journal: An artist's impression of the proposed adventure parkAn artist's impression of the proposed adventure park

Councillor Chris Ready, Wigan Council’s portfolio holder for communities and neighbourhoods, said: “The new play area promises to be a fabulous addition to Pennington Flash Nature Reserve, making it an even more attractive place for families to spend a day out.

“We’re delighted with how our plans have been coming together and we’re really excited to share our progress.

Wonderful asset

“We want this to be a wonderful asset for the whole community, and as such we’d love as many people as possible to come along to see our plans, talk to members of our design team  and help us shape the final result.

“This will be an inclusive play area which children with additional needs will be able to enjoy with their families and friends, and we’re particularly keen for feedback on this element from children and families – including members of our Wigan Parent Carer Forum.”

The plans, which have been developed following initial feedback from young people, are intended to complement the play area’s surroundings and include a seating and picnic area alongside play equipment suitable for under 5s and children up to the age of 11.

Subject to planning approval, work on the play area is expected to begin early in 2023 with a view to completion in the spring.

Believe in Leigh fund

Councillor Keith Cunliffe, deputy leader of Wigan Council, said: “We know that improving the facilities at Pennington Flash Nature Reserve is one of the top priorities for residents as part of our Believe in Leigh Fund and the creation of this fabulous new play area is all part of our efforts to create the best possible experience for families.

“With work already well underway to resurface footpaths, install new signage and improve car parking – and with our new visitor centre and café due to open later this year – it’s a really exciting time for one of the jewels in Leigh’s crown.”

For more information on the development of Pennington Flash Nature Reserve visit