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Film screening – Jonathan Dimbleby chairs a heated debate

On Playday there will be more chances to get outdoors and play as well as some special screenings of the film…

Love Outdoor Play

Guest blog, by Laura Hetherington

Growing up in a small working-class village community in rural Derbyshire I took for granted the immense adventure playground on my doorstep: the woods I roamed with my sister, the fields in which we picked armfuls of buttercups and looked for toads, the hedges we made our dens, the stream we damned in so many different ways, the trees we climbed to hide from the farmer who didn’t like us trespassing on his land, the different routes we found around the village to escape the stones the big boys would throw at us.

This is the sort of childhood many of my generation will remember whether it be roaming parks and canals in cities or the fields and woods of the countryside. There were no mobile phones to aid our communication and very few of us wore watches yet we still managed to meet up…

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Children’s rights’ lobby calls for statutory play duty in England

Interesting blog from our friends at Policy for Play

Policy for Play

In what may come to be seen as a watershed moment for the campaign for children’s right to play in England, a report published today by the Children’s Rights Alliance for England and endorsed by a wide range of leading children’s rights advocates, including Barnardo’s, the Children’s Society and the NSPCC, has called for a children’s play provision to become a full statutory duty and polucy for play to once again become a specific responsibility of the national government.

The report, entitled UK implementation of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child: civil society alternative report, 2015, to the UN Committee, Englandhighlights the detrimental effect on children of austerity measures across a wide spectrum of their lives, including the hugely disproportionate reduction in play services and the closure of many playgrounds after the abandonment of the Play Strategy in 2010.

The Children’s Commissioner, Anne Longfield, once a…

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Sharing this guest blog from – Child’s play? Investing in the young despite austerity

Child’s play? Investing in the young despite austerity.

From Natural Connections ..Spring into learning

Spring into learning.

Shared from Outdoor People .. A reflection on My Playworker’s Travelling Journal

My Playworker’s Travelling Journal.

The magical kingdom of the Plymouth Play Association Scrapstore …








Earlier this week I commented about a lovely visit we had at the Scrapstore from our friends at Play Torbay .. When they got home they sent us this lovely note …

” Here are some photos from our visit, for you – please extend big thanks to
all! As the Scrapstore is a page, I can only post one pic, so I attach our
album, the young people called

“A visit to the magical kingdom of Plymouth Play Association Scrapstore”

and they described as:

“If you go to Union Street in Plymouth, you may be tempted to go shopping,
spend lots of money and go home stressed out. Well, we went to Union Street
in Plymouth tempted by the Scrapstore and went nowhere else: you are
greeted by the friendliest people ever, are invited to touch and play with
everything for as long as you like and come back home with a chokablock bag
full of special things for £2!!! Thank you so much for having us and we
REALLY hope you will come in your van at Easter to Torbay, so people can
have the same lush experience: we love you Plymouth Play Association!”

And The Plymouth Play Association Scrapstore .. And resources really enjoyed your visit and hope to see you again soon .. And we would love to see what you made with your collections!

Love from us all.

Unconditional love

Its been nearly a year since the Exploring Nature play project with Play England came to an end, and yesterday I had the opportunity to meet with Good from Woods and Naomi who had done the research for me at Fort Apache and been my friend, colleague and adventurer during the length of the project. Whilst listening to Alice and Naomi talk so enthusiastically about both the research and the wider project, I must admit I was heartened at the fact that we had helped yet more play lightbulb moments. The passion that both demonstrated for free play outdoors and in the woods was inspiring … They are looking for more opportunities to share the research and to develop more research that will promote the importance of play in its own right, as an integral part of so many things that happen out there in the lives of children and young people.
We talked at length about Exploring Nature Play project and the amazing people who had been involved from across England and where they are now and what they are doing, we talked about Fort Apache. It was at that point that Alice said something which for me totally summed up my experiences of the place, the children and the playworkers there, also the community that surrounds it, and people who touch it .. And that was Its unconditional love .. The love that is given and received when you are part of it is just like a parents love for their children and a child’s love in return .. The mornings the team arrived to find it different to when they were there last and how they dealt with it, the child who arrived not in the best of places, things that happen during the session .. All received that love .. The unconditional kind ….the playworker kind….