Listen to the Chaddesden Park group (John, Kyle, Ewan and Will/JD) talk about their memories. You can also read their interview.
What are your memories of Chaddesden Park?
When the groundskeeper was trying to chase me because I put my bike on the flat spinning thing and it flung off into younger kids who were trying to play on the park…
I’ve lots of different memories, none that really stand out. It’s just a place where I’ve done lots of things.
Can you talk about any of those things?
Just from just sitting there doing nothing, just sitting chilling with my mates, to causing trouble. Like there’s so many things I’ve done on there, it’s hard to pinpoint a certain thing.
I’ve been going since my mum used to take me, and then obviously when I was old enough to do things by myself with my mates and that. So it’s like I’ve always been there from when I’ve been on my own to when my mum used to take me out.
Have you guys noticed anything that’s changed at the park?
The actual park itself, the playing area changed a few years ago.
More like physical things, isn’t it?
Not so much the people that go there but just the actual appearance of it.
Do you think the change in the park is a good thing?
No, a bad thing.
For people our age, isn’t it?
It’s more family orientated.
You came up with a really good statement before about how it’s not necessarily the area that changes but the people that change, and then they see it in a different way.
Oh yeah. Yeah, it’s not always—Like people think places change but maybe it’s not actually the place changing, it’s them changing, growing up and believing the area’s changed. But really, obviously it’s just a place where you go when you’re younger and that.
And what does Chad Park mean to you, or what has it meant to you over the years?
A start. A start of something new. Like if me and my mates were planning to do something, like maybe something that—
Meet up on Chad Park and that, yeah.
Yeah, we’d meet up on Chad Park as a start of something.
A starting point.
Ah, so you meet up on the park and then decide what you’re going to do from there?
Quite often when I met my mates we were planning on going somewhere else. We’d meet in Chad Park and we’d just end up staying on Chad Park.
Staying on Chad Park. Oh, that always happens.
I think as well, when I was younger it used to be like you’d get to a certain age and your mum lets you go on the street, you’re not allowed off the street, and then you’re allowed to the shop at the bottom of the road, and then—
Just slowly edging and edging a bit (laughs).
Yeah, you’re just working your way up to when you’re allowed down Chad Park.
Without your mum.
And then a whole new world opens and—
Freedom, being on Chad Park without your parents.
And when you were hanging out in the park when you were younger, did it feel like a safe space for you?
Even though there’s children there, there’s always other families from Chad and that, they’re always – they’re never, it’s very rare you see arguments between the youth and the people and parents. Obviously there’s that mutual kind of respect. Like there’s people there with young children so…
So it kind of works?
It gels together as a community space…
Any closing comments?
No, that’s it, I think.