2:10pm Friday 11th January 2013
By Alexandra Rucki
Protesters occupying an adventure playground ear-marked for demolition are demanding a public meeting be held over the future of the site.
Tomorrow marks a week since Occupy London and Wandsworth Against Cuts (WAC) began the occupation of Battersea Park playground.
Wandsworth Council have threatened the group with legal action, while one 'o'clock clubs for children have been cancelled and a neighbouring smaller park locked up.
Demolition was expected to take place on January 7, but the action of the campaigners has seen a stand-off between council workers, police and the protestors.
It is thought the bulldozers will be moving in on Monday to begin the £200,000 rebuild of the playground.
Campaigners are planning an event on Saturday to celebrate the playground as well as marking one week of occupation.
There will be live music, performance and speakers, with visitors invited to bring a picnic.
A statement released by Occupy London said: "We demand the suspension of the demolition of Battersea Park Adventure Playground, pending the holding of a public meeting with a transparent and accountable dialogue and a full consultation by Wandsworth Borough Council of the whole community about the future provision of free, safe, staffed adventurous and accessible play facilities."
Last year Wandsworth Council announced they would be refurbishing the playground with new equipment, removing the need to hire play supervisors.
Building work has already began at the playground in York Gardens, Lavender Road, while the park in Kimber Road is becoming a skating facility.
Councillor Kathy Tracey, cabinet member for children's services, said: "These are well organised protesters with their own agenda.
"We hope that once they have made their point, they will allow us to get on with the work required to reopen the playground."
The event is expected to take place in the area surrounding the playground from 2pm to 4pm.
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