The foun­tains of youth!

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Front Page - By STEPHEN BRIGGS

THE sun came out and hun­dreds of peo­ple flocked to Cathe­dral Square to see the city’s new foun­tains in op­er­a­tion, with many young­sters tak­ing time out to play in the new wa­ter fea­ture.

FAM­I­LIES had a splashing time in the sum­mer sun as the new city cen­tre foun­tains con­tin­ued to be a hit.

Young­sters came out in their droves as the warm weather re­turned yes­ter­day to cool off in the new Cathe­dral Square foun­tains, while shop­pers and city cen­tre work­ers stopped to take in Peter­bor­ough’s new­est at­trac­tion.

Some chil­dren even came fully pre­pared and dressed in their swim­ming cos­tumes ready to play in the jets of wa­ter, while bal­loon mod­ellers and bub­ble-sword sell­ers took ad­van­tage of the crowds flock­ing there.

Peter­bor­ough City Coun­cil leader Marco Cer­este said: “It is fan­tas­tic to see how pop­u­lar they have been.

“I saw lots of fam­i­lies en­joy­ing the foun­tains, watch­ing their chil­dren play in the wa­ter and en­joy­ing the square.”

Tests on the foun­tains are still con­tin­u­ing this week and there were short spells when they were turned off yes­ter­day to al­low contractors to con­tinue pro­gram­ming them.

The spec­tac­u­lar light­ing was also given a first test last night.

Mayor of Peter­bor­ough councillor Keith Sharp has also wel­comed the new wa­ter fea­tures.

He said: “I have had a look at them this week and they are quite im­pres­sive.

“It is at­trac­tive and quite peace­ful, and when the lights are work­ing at night it will be a nice area of the city.”

For­mer leader of the coun­cil, councillor John Peach said he was pleased that the £11.6 mil­lion Cathe­dral Square project was now near­ing com­ple­tion.

Cllr Peach was leader of the coun­cil when the scheme was first an­nounced and made the first cer­e­mo­nial cut into the square with a dig­ger in Fe­bru­ary 2009.

He said: “It looks more or less how I thought it would and it is pleas­ing to see so many peo­ple en­joy­ing it in the sun.

“Ob­vi­ously it is nice to see the project so close to com­ple­tion – al­though I don’t know why it has taken so long to fin­ish.

“I know there are a lot of peo­ple for and a lot of peo­ple against the foun­tains, but it was im­por­tant for some- thing to be put in to liven the square up and make it dif­fer­ent.

“The new de­sign has made the square much more open. When St John’s Square at the back of the church is fin­ished, there will be grass and veg­e­ta­tion and if we have farm­ers’ mar­kets or con­certs in the square the foun­tains can be turned off.

“The slabs were cho­sen by me so they are easy to main­tain and clean.”

How­ever, not ev­ery­one is so keen on the foun­tains.

Gemma Davies, as­sis­tant man­ager at Greggs the bak­ers on the square, said: “It is nice, but from a shop and health and safety point of view it is not good hav­ing so many peo­ple soak­ing wet run­ning around and com­ing into the shop.

“We have had a few chil­dren soak­ing wet in here, it makes it very slip­pery.

“I also don’t think they are worth the money.”

A coun­cil spokes­woman said that they were work­ing to pro­gramme the foun­tains so they would be switched on from early in the morn­ing un­til 10pm dur­ing the sum­mer.

These hours will be re­duced grad­u­ally as win­ter ap­proaches.

Pic­ture: row­land hob­son.

fun: As Peter­bor­ough bathed in sun­shine so fam­i­lies bathed in the foun­tains of Cathe­dral Square. (METP-02-06-10RH6)

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