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Footprint fun will help new-look Kingsway come alive for children

Dragon footprints will be among the attractions along Swansea's new-look Kingsway.


A playful trail of them will help make the revamped pedestrian-friendly location as appealing as possible to young children and their families.

They will complement other enticements in the Swansea Council transformation such as grassed areas, 170 new trees and expansive paved areas.

They will reflect the role that pupil-designed mascot Dilly the Dragon plays as a standard-bearer for children's rights across the council and city. 

They are designed to be a constant reminder of Swansea being a city that values children and young people and a place that continually works to ensure they enjoy their rights.

Robert Francis-Davies, the council's cabinet member for investment, regeneration and tourism, said: "The dragon footprints are inspired by children who took part in a consultation we held to get views on the Kingsway scheme. They will extend the influence of Dilly, allowing us to bring him to life.

"They're being designed now and, when laid, will be a subtle, attractive way of showing children that the city centre is theirs to enjoy."

Will Evans, cabinet member for children's services (young people), said: "The footprints are being funded at a modest cost by the Kingsway project and show that the council is working hard - in innovative ways - for children and young people.

"Swansea values children and young people. This is a city that recognises that they form a key part of our communities and our future."

The £12m Kingsway Infrastructure scheme is seeing The Kingsway and neighbouring streets transformed. It is due to be complete around the end of this year.

A new urban park will be created, with improved accessibility, new public areas and a two-lane 20mh road.

The aim is to make it an attractive environment, bringing people to live in, work in and visit the city centre.

Around 20 Dilly the Dragon footprints will be laid, each around a foot square and flush with the new paving. A final route for the trail is now being considered.

Dilly, who symbolises the council's commitment to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC), was designed five years ago by Mia Parsons, then a pupil at Glyncollen Primary School.

The mascot came about as a result of the council pledging to uphold a "due regard duty" for children's rights. 

Two existing Glyncollen pupils - 11-year-old "super ambassadors" Emily Jones and Sam Morgan - unveiled the footprints scheme in the city centre.

Council specialists helping deliver the footprint trail include those working on education, play, children's rights, regeneration, the environment and infrastructure.

The Kingsway Infrastructure Project is a European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) supported project with a £4.5m Welsh European Funding Office (WEFO) funding approval.

Photo Glyncollen Primary School "super ambassadors" Emily Jones and Sam Morgan in Orchard Street, Swansea, with a prototype Dilly the Dragon footprint, and Swansea Council cabinet member for children's services (young people) Will Evans.



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