“We have been using the PSSLive software since 2013 and have found it to be an invaluable tool to help us manage our play areas and trees. It gives us an effective audit trail of what was found when and how / when it was resolved. In addition the ability to manage our trees through the software – from initial surveying to follow up inspections has also been of great benefit.” – Rob Thurston, Grounds Manager, Weston-super-Mare
Weston-Super-Mare has grown from a fishing village of 180 inhabitants in 1810 to a major holiday resort of 80,000 people today. The Town Council was established in 2000 as the only democratically elected body which exclusively represents the town.
Weston-Super-Mare Town Council maintains a number of parks and green spaces along with a cemetery and 21 play areas within the town. Some play areas are owned by the Town Council and others are leased from North Somerset Council. Inspections are undertaken weekly as a minimum, however, this can be more or less frequent based on the usage and condition of the Sites. They are also regularly checked for litter and other debris. The Council has been using PSSLive to Inspect and manage over 1000 assets across 40 site areas since 2013. The software utilises both a Desktop and a Mobile Application which allows park staff and Inspectors to log any Findings and add Tasks while out on Site, to be able to then collate the data back in the office.
With regard to the management and maintenance required to keep play areas in good condition, Weston-Super-Mare has developed an investment program to refurbish the sites it is responsible for. This program has commenced in 2016/17 with a £95,000 skate park refurbishment project (supported by a Sport England grant) together with equipment and surfacing repair/ replacement works across 5 other play sites. Future years of the refurbishment program will see a number of play sites being completely refurbished.
In addition the Town Council provides an effective revenue inspection and repair budget to ensure that facilities are maintained in good condition. Additional play areas are planned to be adopted from North Somerset Council where new development has taken place and fully funded new sites have been installed. These outlined mechanisms help to ensure that Town Council play areas are attractive and well maintained. In 2010 the successful sea front Water Adventure Play Park was opened and since then has averaged 20,000 visitors per year.
PSSLive helps Weston-Super-Mare maintain high standards of Health and Safety with its in-built risk level report system and the ability to add photographs at every stage of an Inspection. The Desktop software also has a number of helpful features which customers find useful. These include a “Dashboard” Home page which allows an “at a glance” review of inspection and safety issues as well as a “Budgeting Page” which is great for planning and maintaining facilities both new and old.
More than half of the Assets recorded in Weston-Super-Mare Town Council’s Database are Trees. As these types of Assets require Inspecting on a less frequent basis, the Council utilise the Scheduling functionality of PSSLive to schedule Inspections one, two, or even five years in the future. One of the largest tasks undertaken with the PSSLive system has been to undertake the initial survey and recording of the trees. This work identified their condition together with “Geo Locating” them on the map and identifying any Findings and Tasks which need to be undertaken. The Town Council have recently extended their tree data by surveying trees in all their Allotment sites. Overall, many of the trees which are managed (more than 400) are located at Milton Road Cemetery, which contains a great variety of Trees, from Yews to Oaks and Sycamores.