The designs for Close Park transformed the existing overgrown, concealed and uninviting park into a fun, interesting, and welcoming open greenspace containing prominent public art and rich new habitat.
The existing high wall along the park frontage was lowered to open up views into the park and deter undesirable behaviour. The existing car park was relocated to the side of the main park frontage and a large open green space was created in its place as a setting for events and informal recreation. New pedestrian entrance routes were designed to create a more direct access and to lead the eye to a focal node for an art work by Mark Jalland and local school children entitled ‘James and His Ball of Fire’. This is one of many art works now located throughout the park which form part of the Irwell Sculpture Trail. Views to the adjacent St Mary’s Church were also opened up allowing the attractive church architecture to feature in views across the park. A formal axis was recreated from the original 19th century layout to lead visitors further into the parks recreational playing fields and play areas with a more direct route. Designed as an employee of Bury Council, the park attained Green Flag status as a consequence of the design improvements. To read more about the sculpture’s background please click here.