Army assault course brought back to former glory at Waterbeach Barracks

The army assault course at Waterbeach Barracks now has a further 21 obstacles, creating an invigorating 1km course overall.

The army assault course at Waterbeach Barracks now has a further 21 obstacles, creating an invigorating 1km course overall. - Credit: Tim George

One of the iconic military facilities left by the Royal Engineers at Waterbeach Barracks has been brought back to its former glory. 

The army assault course now has a further 21 obstacles, creating an invigorating 1km course overall. 

It was officially opened during the Jubilee bank holiday weekend, and saw over 350 juniors and adults christening the new course. 

The transformation was made possible through the Urban&Civic team, who are leading the development of the site, working in partnership with Bury St Edmunds based The Playground. 

The original assault course, built by 39 Engineer Regiment, includes wooden steps, an 11ft brick wall, a water jump, a 6ft brick wall, balance beams, a 20ft rope climb, a 5ft wall drop, a scaffold rig and a rope swing. 

Formed in three rows of three obstacles, the team say this section is already proving popular with family and friends wanting to compete against each other. 

Founding director of The Playground, Nick Smith, said: “We’re excited to be launching our second playground, and Waterbeach is the perfect site location. 

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“It’s great to be able to pay homage to the site’s heritage by incorporating obstacles from the former barracks assault course and adding new ones to create a diverse, challenging and rewarding experience.” 

The transformed army assault course at Waterbeach Barracks now has a further 21 obstacles

The transformed army assault course at Waterbeach Barracks now has a further 21 obstacles, creating an invigorating 1km course overall. - Credit: Tim George

The obstacles added by Nick and his team include hurdles, hangover walls, incline/decline monkey bars, log leaps, a cargo net crawl, a Ninja Warrior ramp and lots of muddy ditches. 

As well as transforming the assault course, the former sports hall has also undergone an extensive refurbishment to start the creation of a healthy living hub, which will sit at the heart of the future development. 

The hub will, in time, sit alongside the future health centre, healthy eating places and outdoor play spaces. 

The sports hall itself now has new lighting, flooring, toilets, and showers have been added with lockers.

The adjoining studio has also been fitted with a new toilet and kitchen facilities so that it can be used independently away from the sports hall. 

Project director at Urban&Civic, Caroline Foster, said: “We’re thrilled that the refurbishment of the assault course next to the sports hall is already proving so popular and we’re equally pleased that we’ve been able to breathe new life into the old sports hall. 

“To have these facilities so early – both for the community to enjoy and for the first residents to have on their doorstep – is just one part of what is going to make the development a really special place to live.” 

Formed in three rows of three obstacles, Urban&Civic say the assault course is already proving popular

Formed in three rows of three obstacles, Urban&Civic say the assault course at Waterbeach Barracks is already proving popular with family and friends wanting to compete against each other. - Credit: Tim George