William Eichler 13 April 2017

Austerity forcing councils to close playgrounds

Local authorities have closed hundreds of playgrounds over the last couple of years – and are planning on closing hundreds more, research reveals.

A new study from the Association of Play Industries (API) found between 2014/15 and 2015/16 councils across England closed 214 children’s playgrounds.

And when they were asked about future plans they admitted their aim was to close a further 234.

The association’s report, Nowhere to Play, shows that £100m - which they suggest could come from the Big Lottery - could reverse the decline in playgrounds which, they argue, is necessary in a time of childhood obesity.

‘With increasing childhood obesity and the health benefits of activity and play well known, now is not the time for community playgrounds to be closing,’ said API chairman Mark Hardy.

‘This action goes against the Government’s clear intention to get children more active and needs to be stopped as quickly as possible. Our survey revealed a 37% cut in Government funding to local authorities.’

‘We know that money is tight for councils across the country, but we can’t just stand by and watch as children's playgrounds close,’ Mr Hardy continued.

‘We are calling on the Government to halt this decline and invest in the next wave of playgrounds to ensure our children have access to free play and activity.’

SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Children's Social Workers and Senior Social Workers (Children Looked After)

London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth
£32,427 to £44,658
Here in Wandsworth, we are on an exciting journey of transformation. Richmond upon Thames, London (Greater)
Recuriter: London Borough of Richmond upon Thames and London Borough of Wandsworth

Peripatetic Customer Services Adviser

Northumberland County Council
£20,444 - £22,129
Northumberland County Council operates a huge range of services across one of the largest counties in the UK. Northumberland
Recuriter: Northumberland County Council

Principal Engineer - York Central

City of York Council
£37,114 to £42,562
We have an exciting opening for an experienced highway design engineer. York, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of York Council

Senior Highway Adoptions Inspector

City of York Council
£31,887 to £36,380
We have an exciting opening for an experienced highway inspector. York, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of York Council

Highways Asset Engineer

Hackney London Borough Council
£37,260 - £38,148
Are you an experienced Asset Management professional looking for your next challenge? Hackney, London (Greater)
Recuriter: Hackney London Borough Council

Partner Content

Circular highways is a necessity not an aspiration – and it’s within our grasp

Shell is helping power the journey towards a circular paving industry with Shell Bitumen LT R, a new product for roads that uses plastics destined for landfill as part of the additives to make the bitumen.

Support from Effective Energy Group for Local Authorities to Deliver £430m Sustainable Warmth Funded Energy Efficiency Projects

Effective Energy Group is now offering its support to the 40 Local Authorities who have received a share of the £430m to deliver their projects on the ground by surveying properties and installing measures.

Pay.UK – the next step in Bacs’ evolution

Dougie Belmore explains how one of the main interfaces between you and Bacs is about to change.