Named after Gregory Bartels, AM (1926-2015), who served on Willoughby City Council from 1983-1993, as Alderman, Deputy Mayor (1985-87, 1989 -91) and as Mayor (1991-93). He devoted much of his life to public service, including Patron, Chairman, Member and Director of many community groups. The land was acquired by Council in 1948. It was previously known as Edgar Street Reserve.
This playground is set in a bushland reserve. A bushcare group meets in the reserve on the 2nd Saturday of each month.