Swing like Tarzan in new adventure park

TREE TOP ADVENTURE: Steve Salter is developing an outdoor park, similar to this one, at South Barrule plantation

TREE TOP ADVENTURE: Steve Salter is developing an outdoor park, similar to this one, at South Barrule plantation

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AN outdoor adventure park at South Barrule plantation will see participants taking on zip wires, Tarzan swings and high ropes.

Steve Salter, who stepped down from his role as Unite regional industrial organiser earlier this year, has drawn up plans for the site, with the construction of the tree top trails due to start next week.

‘The Isle of Man has been crying out for a facility like this for a number of years,’ he said.

‘People always say there is nothing for young people to do. Hopefully when this is built it will change people’s attitude a little bit.’

It will feature an adult park with zip wires, Tarzan swings, obstacles, vertical climb sections, and a range of high rope activities.

Mr Salter explained it was impossible to fall off any of the obstacles because when participants start on their adventure they are clipped on to a ‘continuous lifeline system’, which they stay attached to until they reach the end of the course two and a half to three hours later.

And there will be a separate children’s park within the same area, for children aged four to 10, so they can experience the same kind of activities but on a smaller scale.

Other facilities will include a new trail within the park for off-road go karts, for use by both children and adults.

A large treehouse will also be built, to be leased to the public for events such as birthday parties and corporate activities.

Mr Salter said it followed the success of similar parks in the UK and further afield.

He said: ‘The way tourism is going in the Isle of Man is we need to make more of the natural materials we have, like the countryside and plantations.

‘This type of facility is something we would like many local people to use and obviously it’s an ideal facility for tourists to use as well.

‘It will appeal to youth clubs, schools and the corporate market as well through team building days and staff social days out.’

He said that after looking at various sites it was decided that South Barrule made an ‘ideal’ location for the park, with a large car park and good road network already in place, and being sheltered from the worst of the weather.

He added: ‘It fits in well with the government’s plan for the development of recreational and leisure facilities outside Douglas, particularly in the south.’

It is hoped the park will be open in time for Easter 2013, with a soft opening towards the end of February.

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