Play England calls for input to draft guidance on Government's Play Strategy

Play England has launched a draft guidance document for embedding the Government's Play Strategy in local authorities.

Its major thrust is to build on the play improvements that are being made through the £235m Playbuilder and Pathfinder programmes by providing guidance for long-term strategic planning for play.

Embedding the Play Strategy is out for consultation until 30 October and Play England is encouraging parks professionals, landscape architects, planners and those involved in health, education and transport to respond.

The guidance could be particularly significant for parks and green spaces as it encourages a strategic approach to creating "healthy, active play, particularly outdoors".

The University of Sheffield's senior lecturer Helen Woolley, who specialises in play and open spaces, told HW that many local authorities need help on rolling out the play agenda, but there are challenges involved.

"With so many other statutory priorities I have heard some local authorities say they can't even get their politicians to decide where to spend their play money," she said. "They've got bigger worries."

Around 500 play spaces have been created so far out of the total 3,500 required by the Government by 2011 under the Playbuilder and Pathfinder capital investment programmes.

GreenSpace business development manager Dave Tibbatts added: "We welcome the emphasis on joined-up delivery and embedding of the strategy at all levels.

"We don't want to see another bland play area being grafted onto a rubbish park, while decision makers congratulate each other on another job completed.

"We believe that parks and the full range of accessible urban green spaces have the potential to make the most significant contribution to this agenda, provided they receive the support and investment they need from senior decision makers."

To comment on Embedding the Play Strategy, visit


Subscribe to Horticulture Week for more news, more in-depth features and more technical and market info.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Read These Next

Tractors - Market roundup

Tractors - Market roundup

Manufacturers are working to provide solutions to many challenges. Sally Drury looks at their newest models.

Tractors reviewed: flexible choice

Tractors reviewed: flexible choice

These two tractors are designed for versatility and operator comfort, but how do they fare under tough test conditions? Sally Drury reports.

Are tree suppliers seeing the benefit of the health message of trees?

Are tree suppliers seeing the benefit of the health message of trees?

The message that health, the environment and business all benefit from trees is finally getting through, but are nurseries seeing an upturn? Sally Drury reports.

Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs


Build your business with the latest public sector tenders covering landscape, arboriculture, grounds care, production and kit supplies. To receive the latest tenders weekly to your inbox sign up for our Tenders Tracker bulletin here.

Are you a landscape supplier?

Horticulture Week Landscape Project Leads

If so, you should be receiving our new service for Horticulture Week subscribers delivering landscape project leads from live, approved, planning applications across the UK.

Horticulture Week Top 50 Landscape and maintenance contractors

See our exclusive RANKING of landscape and maintenance contractors by annual turnover plus the FULL REPORT AND ANALYSIS


Free to subscribers, the essential guide for professional plant buyers

Download your copy

Products & Kit Resources