A NEW park will be opened in Swindon within six weeks.

The council has raised £130,000 and will open the temporary park on the site of the former postal sorting office. It will serve shoppers, visitors and Broadgreen residents.

And once the next phase of regeneration in the town centre is ready, the turf and trees will move on.

The scheme was dreamed up by Garry Perkins, the Tory cabinet member for regeneration.

He said: “None of the Tarmac will be dug up. The soil is going on top, and the trees will be dropped into the soil. We don’t want to a concrete monolith of shops. We want some life. It helps it’s in Broadgreen, they don’t have anything green.

“It’s a case of keeping costs reasonable and not making it too permanent. But for a minimum of three years it’ll be here.”

The site has been derelict for around three years, and has stood surrounded by hoardings.

Coun Perkins said the creation of the park might have happened sooner, but he had only held the regeneration portfolio since last year.

The Union Square development, beginning with work on flats close to the soon-to-vanish Whalebridge Roundabout, will progress in phases across the town centre towards the bus station, bringing new shops and offices.

Coun Perkins said the idea was only decided a couple of weeks ago, and did not need to go through council or cabinet approval.

But meanwhile, other development which should have been started by now, remain moribund.

One is the proposal to transform the nearby station forecourt into a pedestrian plaza.

It was supposed to be under way in early spring, but no work has yet begun. Coun Perkins said: “That will be starting shortly. The delay has been due to Network Rail’s contract people, even though we’ve put in 70 per cent of the money. That’s what’s so frustrating.

“I’ve been assured it will be starting by the end of the summer.”

The park will be a mix of grass and paving, and will continue to host the funfair on its paved area.