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Hanwell Playing It Naturally

Groundwork London, with funding from Biffaward a multi-million pound environment fund managed by the Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts, which utilises landfill tax credits donated by Biffa Waste Services and additional funding from the Veolia Environmental Trust, is creating the ‘King George’s Field Playscape’ in Hanwell, West London.

The scheme is designed to challenge and inspire children and provide a space for all ages that encourages engagement with natural surroundings and taking acceptable levels of risk.  

The King George’s Field Playscape, opening in the New Year, will be made from various sustainable materials and encourage natural play for children of all ages. The Playscape approach incorporates grassy mounds, sand, trees and the ever popular play equipment such as swings and slides to encourage adventure and creativity in play.  

Pupils from local primary school St Marks have been involved throughout the entire process of this new development by contributing their ideas. When asked on the importance of having somewhere interesting to play and socialise, one pupil at St Marks School replied: “it’s extremely very ultra mega massively important, (which in itself highlights the need and importance of such a project!).

Even while the space is blocked off for building work it is still a source of fun and inspiration for local children. A day designed to engage and entertain local youngsters saw plenty of creativity as pupils painted the outside hoarding and contributed to game instructions that were written over it. A marquee with park plans and snacks enticed the community to come and get involved, and provided a forum for asking questions and learning about the new space.  

Gillian French, Biffaward’s Programme Manager, says “Biffaward recognises the importance of the Groundwork Playscape approach and the Playing it Naturally programme as a beacon for genuine natural play. Britain’s children and Groundwork need support in order to create opportunities for healthier play, and Biffaward is delighted to be able to provide this.”  

The Executive Director of The Veolia Environment Trust, Margaret Cobbold, says, “The Trust works to support community and environmental projects across the UK. Play areas such as this have a valuable role in our communities and we are happy to be supporting the Playscape project at King George’s Field, Hanwell, West London”

The park before work began


The painted hoarding that currently surrounds building work


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