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Jack Watkins Memorial Park

Home > Adelaide > Dog Friendly | Family | Free | Parks | Pets
by Outrageous Jones (subscribe)
but you can just call me Ray. My life is full of great experiences, made better for sharing.
Published February 28th 2017
Dog friendly park for the whole family
Are you looking for a less crowded dog park to walk your dog? Or perhaps a family and fitness friendly park for a morning exercise or weekend picnic? Then let me recommend Jack Watkins Park tucked away behind some shops, (Clean Machine Cleaning Equipment), but right next to Costco at the Churchill Centre on Churchill Road, Kilburn. The park is open 6 am to 6 pm every day.

Jack Watkins, Dog Park, parks, Playgrounds, Asbestos
Jack Watkins Reserve and Dog Park

I noticed the park on a recent visit to the American Wholesale Superstore and especially saw that no-one was using the park on a Saturday morning when other dog parks are full to the brim.

Jack Watkins, Dog Park, parks, Playgrounds, Asbestos
Dog Free (on this day) and Dog Friendly

The park has many excellent facilities for canine and non-canine families. A basketball ring, fitness equipment, shelter, BBQs and a nice if a slightly dated playground full of safety features for the kids.

Jack Watkins, Dog Park, parks, Playgrounds, Asbestos
Playgrounds and Family BBQ's

The park is maintained to a high standard by the Port Adelaide Enfield Council. The dog park is divided into two sections with a dedicated area with dog play features such as tunnels and jumps. There are two BBQs, the family recreation area and safe off road parking.

Jack Watkins, Dog Park, parks, Playgrounds, Asbestos,Speedway
Site of the Kilburn Speedway

The park is remembered as the location of the original Kilburn Speedway where early motorcycle daredevils slid their machines around, and more importantly for the of the Asbestos Related Disease Association of SA, based around the old Islington Rail Yards.

So who was Jack Watkins? Jack was an Occupational Health and Safety, and campaigned tirelessly for worker's rights and conditions. With the Kilburn community, Jack fought for the clean-up of the Islington Rail waste site, and its conversion into a public park. Due to their efforts, this site has been entirely cleared of toxic materials, including the dreaded and dangerous asbestos. The area was converted to an attractive park and named after Jack. It stands as a tribute to workers who have died from an asbestos-caused disease.

Jack Watkins, Dog Park, parks, Playgrounds, Asbestos
Asbestos Jack

Jack sadly passed away 16th October 2007. Jack is remembered by some as "Asbestos Jack". There are many lives remembered in memorial plaques and artwork, and I recommend a short time of reflection for the dedicated workers who lost their lives to the ignorance of an earlier industrial era.

Jack Watkins, Dog Park, parks, Playgrounds, Asbestos,Speedway
Railyards of a bygone era
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Why? Park and Dog Exercise
When: 6 am to 6 pm
Where: Jack Watkins Reserve, 441 Churchill Road, Islington, SA
Cost: Free
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