The paint is barely dry on the newly-renovated playground of Stockton’s childcare centre, but the suburb’s erosion trouble looks set to force its permanent relocation.
The infants had only just moved into their revamped digs when huge swells gouged the coastline, leaving behind only a one-metre drop-off to the ocean.
The general manager of the Mission Australia Early Learning Centre, Ben Williams, confirmed a proportion of the playground was no longer accessible.
“Following an assessment by engineers, the area closest to the cliff was deemed unsafe and a temporary fence was erected to ensure the safety of our young people, families and staff,” he said.
“We are currently working with Newcastle City Council to consider options to relocate the playground to adjacent land. We have only just finished a significant playground upgrade and are therefore keen to see it re-purposed in any potential new space.”
Stockton residents have been promised an update on work to solve the crisis “within the next month” after a meeting between council, the state’s Coastal Panel and Department of Premier and Cabinet.