Pokesdown Children’s Centre

Bournemouth has eight children’s centres providing a range of services and support for children, from birth to primary school age, and their families.

The YMCA manages two Sure Start children’s centres, one of which is Pokesdown from which Teddy’s pre-school and crèche now runs.  The design for the external play area of the new crèche included a pond feature and a collection of cartoon-like, underwater creatures in vivid primary colours.

Architects’ Terence O’Rourke initially thought that mosaic tiles were the only way to achieve the accuracy such a complex design required.

The landscape contractor, P W Reynolds contacted SureSet to discuss a paving solution that fully met the architect’s requirements; accurately recreating the design and vibrant colours, as well as providing a low maintenance, highly durable and permeable surface.

We mixed 20 bespoke blends to recreate colours within the design, and once on site used laser-cut formers to recreate the outline and intricate detail of the design.

The bespoke blends were then expertly hand-trowelled, providing a precise and perfectly smooth finish.

A 3mm Sahara Gold aggregate was installed to the surrounding areas. This both complements the vivid colours of the cartoon-like underwater creatures and gives the appearance of sand against the surrounding water.

Teddy’s pre-school and crèche has a unique, playful pretend pond to play in.   The design of cartoon-like underwater creatures; recreated in vibrant primary colours, encourage and stimulate imaginative play.

Practically, the school has a virtually maintenance free play area; there will be no weeds, puddles or loose stone to contend with – creating more time for play!

“Staff at Bournemouth YMCA are absolutely thrilled with the overall look of the crèche garden area, and with the designs that were achieved with SureSet. The quality of the project is absolutely fantastic, recreating incredibly closely the architect’s initial design concepts.”

Stephen Foster, PW Reynolds


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