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New play strategy launches

New play strategy launches

Elmbridge launches its future vision for play with ‘Street Play’

In Elmbridge, we are taking play very seriously and we are excited to launch our new play strategy 2021-2026 with ‘Street Play’; an initiative based on the ‘Playing Out’ concept of creating a safe space for children to play out on their doorstep.

Street Play sessions are:

  • organised by neighbours for neighbours
  • temporary
  • inclusive
  • safe
  • simple and fun to organise

It is important that you contact us to apply for road closure before organising your event to ensure that children play safely away from traffic on the day.

Street Play sessions are a great solution for families who want their children to build up confidence about playing outdoors in small groups of people they know. During lockdown, neighbourhood communities have flourished and supported each other. Getting children to play together in their street under the supervision of parents is the natural next step for them to get to know each other better.

‘Street Play’ gives families complete control of the event. You choose when and where the event takes place and we can assist you with the event organisation. We can advise on safety measures, how to advertise the play session and give you information on how to make it a success for all. We also have a hire out kit including traffic cones and play equipment (terms and conditions apply).

Councillor Janet Turner, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture, said, “We all know the countless benefits of play for children and young people; from developing their self-awareness, confidence, imagination, problem-solving and social skills that will serve them for life. Playing is a way to understand their environment and make new friends. Street Play offers the opportunity for parents and children to get to know neighbours and develop a strong sense of community through play. We hope you will get in touch with us soon to get your Street Play session on the road.”

For further information on Street Play sessions, please visit Street Play or email our play development officer at shout@elmbridge.gov.uk.

What are our other play projects this summer and longer term?

During the school holiday, we have been working in partnership with Surrey County Council and Spurgeons Children’s Charity, which supports vulnerable and disadvantaged children and families, to offer play activities as part of their Club4 camp (fun, friendship, food and fitness) in Walton-on-Thames. Shout! are bringing a selection of crafts, sports and games to the camp and Elmbridge Museum are offering educational crafts linked to the history of Elmbridge.

The popular Shout! Stay and Play sessions were also back this summer with free drop-in activities in Hersham Coronation recreation ground and Elmgrove recreation ground. Their last visit for the summer will be on Tuesday 24 August in Hersham and Thursday 26 August in Walton,10am to 1pm.

Shout! will also lend their support to a play session hosted by PA Housing in Molesey at the end of this month.

In October half-term, we will be widening our play sessions to the whole community at various locations across the borough. We look forward to seeing you there. Check out our regular updates at Shout!.

To find out more about our play strategy for the next 5 years, please visit Elmbridge Leisure.

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