A NEW �180,000 play park and multi-use games area was officially opened in Port Glasgow today.

Inverclyde Council spent the cash transforming the open space in front of Boglestone Community Centre as part of its programme of investment in play areas.

The park has been landscaped and features a multi-use games area with lighting controlled by daylight sensors and a time clock, plus a play area and a large cable zip wire.

Seating has also been installed across the site.

Pupils from the nearby schools were consulted about the design of the play area, which is already proving to be popular with children and parents.

Education and Communities vice-convener and Inverclyde Young People's Champion, Councillor James McColgan, said it was an excellent addition to the area.

Councillor McColgan said: "It provides a modern, state-of-the-art facility for the community for years to come.

"Play areas like this hold the key to improving the health of our communities, by giving children and young people a fun and safe environment to play in and enjoy - helping to get them away from the TV and be more active, more often." Earlier this month, vandals caused hundreds of pounds worth of damage at the showpiece playpark.

At least 200 new plants were ripped up and strewn around the park.

Mud was splattered around the area, while empty bottles and cans were dumped and graffiti scrawled on part of the equipment.

The damage was repaired in time for today's opening ceremony and extra community warden patrols have already been put in place to guard against a repeat.